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Valdez Goes Distance, Astros Drop to A’s

The Oakland Athletics dropped the Houston Astros, 3-2 on Saturday afternoon.

Houston Astros v Oakland Athletics
Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

The Houston Astros couldn’t top the Athletics in front of 10,058 at Oakland Coliseum.

Houston entered today’s matchup against the Oakland Athletics winners of 18 of their last 22. Framber Valdez (8-4, 2.64) took his 17th turn on the hill for the season. As part of the five-headed monster that is Houston’s rotation, Valdez’ stellar 1.129 WHIP coming into the game actually ranked fourth, and his 8.3 K/9 ranks just ninth out of 11 qualified pitchers on the roster.

Valdez actually Frambered himself out of trouble early, when he had two runners in scoring position with only one out. He struck out Chad Pinder and induced an Elvis Andrus groundout to close the frame.

Yuli Gurriel hit a one-out single in the second, followed by an Aledmys Díaz double. Chas McCormick singled Gurriel home, and Diaz scored on a Martín Maldonado groundout to set up a 2-0 Houston lead.

In the bottom of the fourth, the A’s got to Valdez on a Seth Brown RBI-fielder’s choice, a Maldonado passed ball, and a wild pitch to give Oakland a 3-2 lead that was all they would need. Despite the passed ball and the wild pitch, two of the three runs were earned. Despite that, Valdez lasted eight innings, surrendering only four hits and two walks. He struck out three and got 60-of-96 pitches over the plate in his complete game loss.

Unfortunately, Houston only totaled five hits for the afternoon. Only Gurriel had multiple hits, and only Diaz’ went for extra bases (a double). (box score)

  • While Valdez gave the bullpen a well-deserved day off, Oakland relied on five relievers after starter Zach Logue lasted five frames. He earned his third career victory against four losses, striking out two, walking one, and surrendering two earned runs on three hits. Logue placed 46-of-75 in the zone.
  • Dusty Baker got himself ejected in the eighth inning after he disagreed with a called strike three.
  • The complete game was Valdez’ second of the year, and he’s the only pitcher on the club to have even one. It was the 15th complete game of the season in the entire major leagues.
  • Houston will have to go for the series win in tomorrow’s game. Today’s loss was the Astros first in five contests against Oakland this season. They have 14 more mutual matchups to go, including tomorrow.
  • Jake Odorizzi (3-2, 4.04) will take the hill against Cole Irvin (3-6, 3.35) in tomorrow’s game, at 3:07 CDT.