MLB Baseball

2
Final 1 2 3   4 5 6   7 8 9   R H E
Houston0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 260
Oakland0 1 4 0 1 0 1 0 x 770
7
  W: J. Luzardo (1-0)   L: C. Javier (1-1)   S: B. Smith (1)
1:10 PM PT2:10 PM MT3:10 PM CT4:10 PM ET16:10 ET20:10 GMT4:10 1:10 PM MST3:10 PM EST3:40 PM VEN0:10 UAE (+1)3:10 PM CT, August 9, 2020
Ring Central Coliseum, Oakland, California  Attendance: 0

Rookies take spotlight in matchup between Astros, A's

According to STATS
According to STATS

Houston Astros at Oakland Athletics

  1. From 2017 through 2019, the Astros hit 52 home runs in 28 games at RingCentral Coliseum, while no other team hit more than 32 (Seattle).
  2. The A's have won six in a row. It is their fourth 6+ game winning streak since mid-May of 2019. Oakland has outscored its opponents 34-14 during the stretch despite hitting just .221 as a team. The A's have hit at least one home run in each game, and their relievers have allowed just two runs in 22.0 innings during the streak.
  3. The Astros have won at least 10 games and taken the season series from the A's in each of the five previous seasons. Since 2017, in meetings at RingCentral Coliseum prior to July 1, the Astros won 16 of 17 against the A's, but in meetings in Oakland on July 1 or later in the season, the A's have won nine of 11.
  4. Jose Altuve has 169 hits against the A's since entering MLB in 2013, second most by any player versus any opponent, and the only one with more is Altuve himself (Altuve vs. Angels -- 173).
  5. Matt Olson had an MLB-high six home runs and an MLB-high 17 runs batted in against the Astros in just 14 games of action last season.
  6. Zack Greinke is 8-2 with a 2.82 ERA in 14 career starts against the A's. In those 14 starts, he has allowed more than three earned runs only once and never allowed more than one home run in any start all while throwing at least 5.0 innings in all 14 starts.
Notes Applicable For Series Dates: 8/7/2020 thru 8/9/2020
(AP Photo/Ben Margot)

The Oakland Athletics go for a three-game sweep and their ninth straight win in an effort to widen their gap over the visiting Houston Astros when the American League West powers continue their low-scoring series on Sunday afternoon.

A pair of impressive rookies -- Oakland left-hander Jesus Luzardo (0-0, 2.31 ERA) and Houston righty Cristian Javier (1-0, 1.42) -- are the scheduled starters.

After a 13-inning marathon Friday that featured 12 pitchers and 12 2/3 innings of relief work, the A's Frankie Montas and Astros' Framber Valdez gave their respective bullpens a break in a starters' duel Saturday, a game won 3-1 by Oakland.

Marcus Semien, the hero of Friday's 3-2 win with a walk-off single, led off Saturday's game with a home run, his first of the season, giving the A's a lead they never relinquished.

The walk-off/leadoff homer two-day double was a first in A's history, and came after Semien had opened the season just 11-for-62 (.177).

The All-Star shortstop also singled, stole a base and scored Oakland's second run Saturday, completing a two-hit day A's manager Bob Melvin attributed to momentum created by the walk-off about 14 hours earlier.

"How can it not?" he asked reporters after Saturday's win. "You see this. ... You play that long. Those games are very difficult to lose and great to win. For him to get a big hit in that situation, I don't know how it can't be good for him."

The two wins extended Oakland's winning streak to eight games and pushed them 4 1/2 in front of Houston, which has won the last three AL West titles. There are just 45 games remaining in the truncated season.

Luzardo will attempt to build upon the margin when he makes his second start of the season. He pitched well, but got no decision Tuesday against Texas, throwing five two-hit, shutout innings in a 5-1 win.

The 22-year-old Peruvian made his big-league debut against the Astros in Houston last September, allowing a home run to Martin Maldonado but no other hits in three innings of relief in a 5-3 victory.

He's 0-0 with a 3.00 ERA in his career against the Astros.

Javier will be making his third start, having limited the Los Angeles Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks to a total of six hits and three runs over 11 2/3 innings in his first two.

The 23-year-old from the Dominican Republic has never faced the A's.

Javier has been starting in place of staff ace Justin Verlander, who suffered a strained right forearm on Opening Night.

Astros manager Dusty Baker was not encouraging when asked for a progress report before Saturday's loss.

"Verlander, to my knowledge, is not progressing as quickly as he'd like to," the veteran skipper told reporters. "But does he ever? Verlander wanted to pitch yesterday."

Pitching has dominated the first two games of the showdown series, with hitters combining for 31 hits and three homers in 22 innings, while the pitchers have recorded 41 strikeouts.

--Field Level Media

Updated August 9, 2020

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