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|09-20-2016, 12:11 AM||#1|
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Astros score twice in 9th to beat Athletics 4-2
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- Marwin Gonzalez hit a tiebreaking, two-run single off Ryan Madson in the ninth inning and the Houston Astros came from behind to beat the Oakland Athletics 4-2 on Monday night.
The Astros trailed 2-1 going into the eighth inning but tied it on Jason Castro's RBI-double then scored twice in the ninth to keep their slim playoff hopes alive.
Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa opened the inning with singles. After Evan Gattis was intentionally walked, Gonzalez lined the first pitch from Madson (5-7) into center field to drive in Altuve and Correa.
Correa finished with two hits while Gattis hit his 28th home run of the season to help the Astros to their fifth straight win over the A's.
Former Oakland reliever Luke Gregerson (4-1) retired three batters for the win. Ken Giles pitched the ninth for his 12th save.
Houston remains three games behind Baltimore and Toronto in the race for the AL wild card spots. Two other teams, Detroit and Seattle, are also in front of the Astros.
Ryon Healy and Bruce Maxwell hit solo home runs for the A's, who had won six of seven before the bullpen allowed three runs in two innings, wasting a strong start by rookie Jharel Cotton.
Cotton allowed one run over six innings. The rookie right-hander retired 18 of the 20 batters he faced, allowed Gattis' home run in the second. He struck out six.
CLOSING IN ON 200 AGAIN
Altuve went 1 for 4, leaving him one hit shy of 200. Altuve is attempting to become the first player since Ichiro Suzuki to have 200 or more hits in three consecutive seasons.
PEACOCK CAN STRUT
Houston starter Brad Peacock allowed two runs over 5 1-3 innings, walked two and struck out two. Peacock, who was the A's top pitching prospect before being traded to the Astros in 2013, extended his career-long streak for allowing three earned runs or fewer to 10 consecutive games. The streak dates to 2014.
Athletics: Sonny Gray (strained right forearm) will throw a bullpen session Tuesday and if all goes well, the Oakland ace will face hitters in his next step of rehab. The team is still hopeful of getting Gray into a game before the end of the season. . Henderson Alvarez will undergo a second surgery on his right shoulder Tuesday. Alvarez has not pitched in the majors since May 22, 2015. ... 1B/OF Mark Canha will begin hitting off a tee as he attempts to return from a back strain that has kept him out since May 9.
Astros: RHP Joe Musgrove (3-4) starts against Oakland on Tuesday. The rookie beat the A's earlier this season when he pitched 5 1-3 scoreless innings.
Athletics: LHP Sean Manaea (6-9) makes his second start since missing 15 days with a strained left rhomboid.