The Sunday matchup for Lance McCullers changed from two-year veteran in Kendall Graveman to all-world pitcher Sonny Gray. Gray was making his first appearance since being put on the 15-day disabled list without making a a minor league rehab start.
Gray got right back on the horse and McCullers matched him stride for stride on Sunday at Minute Maid Park. After the Athletics took an early 2-0 lead, the Astros used a few home runs and A's errors to pull out a 5-2 victory for a three-game sweep of Oakland.
The aforementioned 2-0 lead came in the first inning as the Athletics loaded the bases with one out -- Jed Lowrie walked, Stephen Vogt singled, and Danny Valencia singled to Colby Rasmus.
Oakland's runs came on the weakest of hits. Yonder Alonso was completely jammed by McCullers, but his hit fell between Carlos Correa and Tony Kemp allowing Lowrie and Vogt to score.
The Astros were able to get a runner on in all five innings against Gray, but couldn't push a run across until Carlos Gomez hit his first home run off the season.
The A's threatened again in the sixth with two runners on and out, but McCullers retired Chris Coghlan and Billy Burns in order to end the inning.
In the bottom of the sixth, Evan Gattis tied things up with a solo home run of his own off A's Daniel Coulombe.
Carlos Correa continued to come through in the clutch in the following inning. George Springer led off the inning with a single, and moved to second on pickoff attempt. Correa ripped a ball down the line that kicked off the wall down the third base line, allowing Springer to score.
Gomez continued to press the A's defense in the eight, he stretched a bloop single into a double in eight and scored on groundout from Springer. A's reliever Marc Rzepczynski gifted the Astros' a five run in the game with the bases loaded. Colby Rasmus turned over on pitch and grounded to the pitcher. Rzepczynski couldn't field the ball, allowing Jake Marisnick to score.
Will Harris picked up his first save of the season with a 1-2-3 inning in the nineth. Houston is now 20-13 in their last 33 games.