The Astros and A’s played a strange game in Oakland on Saturday, with the Astros not getting their first hit until the seventh inning and coming back from a 5-0 deficit to win the game, 10-6. That makes it the second game this week that they came back from a five-run deficit to win the game, something they hadn’t done since 2008. And it’s the first time since 1995 that the Astros have overcome a five-run deficit to win a game twice in the same month.
— Houston Astros (@astros) April 16, 2017
Despite the win, it’s not all good news for the Astros because SS Carlos Correa was hit by a Frankie Montas pitch in the top of the ninth inning and had to leave the game. The initial diagnosis is a hand contusion and the X-rays were negative, but it doesn’t mean Correa will avoid being placed on the disabled list. Especially now that it’s a 10-day DL rather than 15, teams are more apt to place players on it for the short-term as a precaution. If Correa misses time, it’ll likely cause utilityman Marwin Gonzalez to become the primary shortstop.
As for Saturday’s game, A’s SP Sean Manaea went five innings without allowing a hit, but he was pulled after giving up 5 walks and notching 6 strikeouts. Despite not allowing a hit, he was charged with 2 runs, 1 earned. RP Ryan Dull then came into the game to get three outs and end the damage in the inning to just two runs being scored. Then OF Nori Aoki got the Astros’ first hit of the game off of RP Liam Hendriks to lead off the seventh. The Astros scored two runs in the inning to make it a 5-4 game.
The Astros tied it in the top of the eighth when DH Josh Reddick scored from third on a Sean Doolittle wild pitch, and Aoki gave the Astros the lead in that same at-bat when he hit a sacrifice fly to center, allowing C Brian McCann to tag up and score, making it 6-5 Houston. After OF Jake Marisnick hit an infield single, OF George Springer hit his sixth home run of the season to make it 8-5 in favor of the visitors heading into the bottom of the eighth.
It has been a wacky ballgame.
Astros 8, Athletics 6 | End 8 pic.twitter.com/wHW7qXJ9z2
— Houston Astros (@astros) April 15, 2017
The A’s got one run back in the eighth on a sac fly by OF Matt Joyce, but the Astros scored a couple more in the top of the ninth — including the final run being scored by SP Mike Fiers, who came in as a pinch-runner when Correa came out of the game because the Astros were out of position players on the bench. RP Luke Gregerson came in for a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth, locking up the 10-6 victory for the Astros.
Astros SP Lance McCullers Jr. had his worst start of the season so far, going 4.1 innings and allowing 8 hits, 5 earned runs and 1 walk to go with his 6 strikeouts. The bullpen helped him out, giving up just 1 run in 4.2 innings of relief, allowing McCullers to avoid being tagged with his first loss of the season and ending up with a no-decision.
The Astros, who are now 8-4 on the season, look for the sweep of the three-game series Sunday afternoon, when SP Charlie Morton takes the mound against A’s SP Jharel Cotton.