Mark Canha contributed run-scoring hits to five- and three-run uprisings, helping the host Oakland Athletics run away from the Houston Astros for an 8-4 victory on Saturday afternoon.
The second-place Athletics won their fourth straight and made it three in a row over the first-place Astros, winning by more than one run for the first time in the series. Oakland trails Houston by 6 1/2 games in the American League West.
After Houston had taken a 2-0 lead in the top of the third inning, the A’s rebounded immediately against Astros right-hander Rogelio Armenteros (1-1) with four straight hits and a bases-loaded walk by Matt Chapman to tie the score.
Matt Olson followed with an RBI single that gave the A’s the lead for good, and Canha came through with a two-run single that extended the Oakland lead to 5-2.
The same script unfolded in the fifth inning, with the Astros scoring first, this time on a solo home run by Yordan Alvarez, before the A’s countered with three.
Olson again chipped in with a run-scoring single, Canha followed with a RBI single and Stephen Piscotty made it 8-3 with a sacrifice fly to send Houston to its fifth straight setback.
Alvarez capped his third multi-homer game of his rookie season when he bombed his second of the day in the eighth inning to close the scoring. The pair raised his season total to 19.
A’s starter Chris Bassitt (9-5) benefited from the big-time offensive support to extend his string of unbeaten starts to four. He allowed three runs and eight hits in six innings, walking two and striking out four.
Promoted from Triple-A to make the start in place of injured Gerrit Cole (hamstring), Armenteros was done after four innings, charged with five runs on seven hits. He walked one and struck out three.
Chapman finished with three hits, while Canha, Olson and Josh Phegley had two apiece for the A’s, who went homerless after smacking seven in the first two games of the series.
George Springer and Michael Brantley joined Alvarez with two hits each for the Astros, who had beaten the A’s in nine of 11 meetings before losing the first three in this series.
–Field Level Media