The Astros rode a five run first inning and strong pitching from Francis Martes to their eighth consecutive away victory against the Oakland Athletics. Martes picked up his second major league victory in his second career start. The Astros improved their road record to 25-8, best in the major leagues.
The Astros started in the best way possible with a big five run first inning. George Springer led off with another 400 foot plus home run, his major league leading 8th lead off homer of the season. It looked like Athletic’s starter Sonny Gray would escape further damage after inducing a double play grounder from Carlos Correa, but the Astros two out magic couldn’t be denied. Brian McCann, Yuli Gurriel and Alex Bregman all had two out RBI hits and the Astros jumped out to a 5-0 lead.
Francis Martes managed to hold that lead over his five and two thirds inning outing, but the A’s made him work for it. They had runners on in every inning and scored solo runs in the first, third and fourth innings.
Martes left after five and two thirds, allowing three runs on six hits and three walks, striking out four.
Meanwhile possible Astros trade target Sonny Gray settled down after his rough first inning. Gray held the Astros offense scoreless after the first, allowing his Oakland teammates time to chip away at the lead.
They crept to within one with another single run in the bottom of the seventh off Michael Feliz.
The Astros offense got back on the board in the eighth, on a bases loaded two out RBI single by Carlos Correa. The insurance runs gave the bullpen room to breathe, and the margin increased on a Carlos Beltran solo home run in the ninth.
Luke Gregerson struck out the side in the eighth, and Dayan Diaz closed out the four run lead albeit in nail biting fashion. The Astros look to continue their win streak at Oakland Coliseum tomorrow night with Mike Fiers taking the hill.