Houston's first loss of the postseason

Oakland forces Game 4 by outslugging Astros in ALDS Game 3

Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Undefeated thus far in the postseason, including the first two games of this best-of-five ALDS, the Astros could sweep the Oakland A's and advance to the ALCS for their fourth-straight year with a win in Game 3. Here is how the game unfolded Wednesday:

Final Score: A's 9, Astros 7.

Series: HOU leads 2-1.

Winning Pitcher: Liam Hendriks.

Losing Pitcher: Brooks Raley.

Teams trade early runs before A's homer their way to a lead

Oakland came out swinging in a must-win game against Jose Urquidy and would get on the board first as they switched to being the visitor team at Dodger Stadium. It came via a one-out solo home run by Tommy La Stella in the top of the first, netting the A's a quick 1-0 lead.

Houston responded right away in the bottom of the first, getting a one-out solo homer of their own by Jose Altuve to tie the game. They then took their first lead, getting an RBI-groundout by Carlos Correa to score Michael Brantley, who singled then moved to third on an Alex Bregman single.

Oakland would continue to pepper the scoreboard with solo home runs against Urquidy, though, with one in the top of the second, fourth, and fifth innings to regain the lead at 4-2, and chasing him out of the game in the fifth. His final line: 4.1 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 1 BB, 3 K, 4 HR, 79 P.

Houston scores five in the fifth, A's tie it up again

After Blake Taylor would load the bases but strand them to finish the top of the fifth for Urquidy, the Astros went to work in the bottom half. They would put together a five-run bottom of the fifth, starting with a two-run homer by Aledmys Diaz to tie the game, followed by RBI hits for Michael Brantley, Alex Bregman, and Kyle Tucker, pushing the Astros in front 7-4.

Josh James was next out of Houston's bullpen for the top of the sixth and would erase a leadoff walk to keep the three-run lead. He returned for the top of the seventh, but the top of Oakland's order would knock him out with back-to-back singles to start the inning to set up a game-tying three-run homer by Chad Pinder to make it 7-7.

Oakland forces Game 4

Brooks Raley took over for James, getting the next three A's out in order, ending the half-inning. Like James before him, Raley would return to try and go another inning but would get tagged by Oakland, who would get two sac flies in the inning to go in front 9-7.

Houston would get the first two batters aboard in the bottom of the eighth but would strand both as Oakland retired the next three batters. Andre Scrubb was able to keep it a two-run game with a scoreless top of the ninth, but Liam Hendriks would complete his third inning of work for Oakland and finish off the win for the A's to force a Game 4.

Up Next: ALDS Game 4 will start at 2:35 PM Central on Thursday. The Astros will remain the home team for another game, with Oakland batting first as the visitors. The starting pitchers have not yet been announced.

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Framber Valdez was dominant on Thursday. Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images.

The Astros came into this game against the Rangers looking to take the finale of the 3-game series, and they did exactly that.

Framber Valdez had another classic performance, pitching seven innings while allowing zero runs and four hits. Valdez also recorded 8Ks and 1BB.

On offense, it was a big day for Yuli Gurriel who bounced back with 3 hits after going 0-5 the previous night. Alex Bregman and Martin Maldonado both went yard, hitting 2 and 3-run bombs respectively.

Maldonado's came in the bottom of the second inning, giving the Astros a 3-0 lead.

Bregman's put the Astros on top 5-0 in the bottom of the 5th.

The Astros added two more runs in the 7th after Bregman singled to drive in a run, and a sac fly from Aledmys Diaz.

Heading into the 8th inning, Seth Martinez took over for Valdez protecting a 7-0 lead. That lead wouldn't last long after Martinez allowed a couple of base runners and gave up 2 runs off a pair of singles from Nathaniel Lowe and Leody Taveras.

The Astros headed to the bottom of the 8th up 7-2.

After a scoreless bottom of the 8th, Rafael Montero came in to close the game out in the 9th.

Montero gave up a solo homer to Marcus Semien with 2 outs in the 9th before shutting the door.

Final: Astros 7, Rangers 3

Next up: Oakland comes to Minute Maid to play the Astros Friday night at 7:10PM.



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