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WATCH: Slumping Oakland Athletics finally bust out in 14-2 blowout of Houston Astros

Sportsnaut
Sportsnaut
 21 days ago

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Pinch hitter Chad Pinder broke open a tight game with a seventh-inning grand slam Friday night as the Oakland Athletics staved off formal elimination in the American League West with a 14-2 trouncing of the visiting Houston Astros.

By snapping a four-game losing streak, the A’s (83-71) not only improved to eight games back of the first-place Astros (91-63) with eight to play, but also remained four behind the New York Yankees (87-67) in the battle for the second wild-card spot in the AL.

A second straight loss hurt the Astros’ chances of catching the Tampa Bay Rays (95-59) for the best record in the AL.

The A’s led just 3-2 before exploding for 11 runs on eight hits in the seventh and eighth, scoring more runs in those two innings than they had in their entire four-game sweep at the hands of the Seattle Mariners earlier in the week, when they were outscored 19-10.

Starling Marte capped a four-RBI performance when he doubled home a pair of runs in the seventh and singled in one in the eighth.

Pinder’s grand slam came three batters after Marte’s double in the seventh, turning a 5-2 game into a 9-2 blowout. The slam was the second of his career, the homer his fourth of the season.

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Matt Olson, a third member of the A’s that drove in four runs, had a two-RBI double to highlight a five-run eighth.

Frankie Montas (13-9) benefitted from the big-time support, limiting the Astros to two runs and two hits in seven innings. He walked three and struck out eight.

One of the two hits off Montas was a solo home run by Jose Altuve, his 30th, which gave Houston a 2-0 lead in the third. The seven-time All-Star moved within one of his career high for homers, which he set in 2019.

Starter Brandon Bielak (3-4) took the loss despite allowing just three of Oakland’s 14 runs. They came on four hits in the first three innings, during which he walked two and struck out three.

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Marte finished 4-for-5 and scored three times for Oakland, while Olson, Tony Kemp and Yan Gomes collected two hits apiece.

Altuve’s homer was the only extra-base hit for the Astros, who have gone 9-5 against the A’s this season.

–Field Level Media

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