The Houston Astros have been arguably one of baseball's hottest teams at the end off May and entering June. The Astros are 10-6 over the past three weeks that included a three-game sweep at the hands of the Texas Rangers.
The Astros looked to build on their game one success against the Oakland Athletes in which the Astros scored seven runs in the first inning for build a 12-2 victory on Friday.
The Astros did just that even if it took longer than it should have, Houston won 6-5 in 12 innings.
The A's would strike first in the second inning as starting pitcher Collin McHugh loaded the bases with no outs. The No. 8 and 9 hitters did the damage for Oakland. Chris Coghlan doubled home two runs and Josh Phegley lifted a sacrifice fly deep enough for Jake Marisnick to be unable to throw out the runner. The A's led 3-0 after an inning and a half.
The Astros batters picked up McHugh shortly thereafter as Evan Gattis hit a two-run home run to cut into the A's lead. Luis Valbuena, Marwin Gonzalez, Jason Castro, and Jake Marisnick combined to manufacture the game-tying third run inning the inning with a single, walk, fielder's choice and a sacrifice fly in that order.
The Astros started to build a lead for McHugh, who started to settle in on the mound. Houston picked up a run in the third as Carlos Correa was hit by a pitch and scored on Colby Rasmus double. Ramsus double hit high off the wall for the Crawford Boxes, allowing Correa to score easily as ricocheted back to the infield.
A fifth Houston run came across in the fifth inning. Jose Altuve reached and moved to second a wild pitch. Altuve would score on a Carlos Correa single to center.
The A's got a run back in the sixth with a Danny Valencia solo home run.
Both starting pitchers would exit the game before completing the sixth inning. Michael Feliz pitched a clean 1 ⅔ innings of baseball in relief.
Correa sparked the offense again in the eighth inning with a leadoff triple. The A's countered an intentional walk to Evan Gattis with one out to set up the double play and a lefty-on-lefty matchup between Valbuena and Sean Doolittle. It worked as Doolittle struck out Valbuena and Gonzalez to end the inning without a score -- a run the Astros could have sorely used following the events of the top of the ninth.
Luke Gregerson entered the game in the ninth inning, hoping to bounce back from his last outing in which he gave up three runs over a third of an inning against the Diamondbacks.
Things started a bit shaky as Gregerson went 3-0 to pinch hitter CoCo Crisp but he rounded back for a strikeout. He would retire Billy Burns on a sharp line drive to Valbuena for the second out.
Former Astros Jed Lowrie tied the game up with his first home run of the season -- the ball went just three or four rows deep into right field stands. It would be back-to-back outings for Gregerson in which he gave up the game-tying runs in the ninth inning.
The Astros' other bullpen question mark this season, Ken Giles, entered the game in the 10th. Giles put two runners on with sharp singles, a wild pitch put winning run 90 feet away. But Giles worked out of the jam with a grounder to Correa.
The game didn't end till the 12th inning when George Springer led off the inning with double down the line. Altuve pushed him to third with a sacrifice bunt. Correa casually flipped a pitch down the line to allow Springer to score.