EditorsNote: Adds new 3rd graf, other small edits
Tyler White clubbed his first career walk-off home run, and the Houston Astros won the rubber match of their critical three-game series with the Oakland Athletics 5-4 on Wednesday at Minute Maid Park.
White smacked his 10th homer off Athletics right-hander Jeurys Familia (8-5), who was ahead in the count 0-2. White lofted a slider into the Crawford Boxes in left field as the Astros reclaimed their 2 1/2-game lead over Oakland in the American League West.
White’s walk-off homer was the 81st in the major leagues this year, setting a single-season record. The previous mark of 80 was recorded in 2004.
The Athletics dropped a series for the first time since being swept by the Colorado Rockies in Denver on July 27-29.
Closer Roberto Osuna (2-2) earned the win by striking out the side in the ninth.
The Astros’ inability to score more than two runs in the first inning kept the door ajar for Oakland. Four of the first five batters reached safely for Houston in that frame, with Jose Altuve posting an RBI single before Carlos Correa added a sacrifice fly to left field that scored Alex Bregman.
But Athletics right-hander Trevor Cahill limited the damage by inducing Yuli Gurriel to ground into his team-leading 21st double play. The Astros wouldn’t score again until the fourth, when George Springer delivered an RBI single prior to Bregman working a bases-loaded walk that chased Cahill and put Houston back ahead 4-3.
Cahill issued six walks over 3 1/3 innings, allowing four runs (three earned) on five hits.
Astros left-hander Dallas Keuchel suffered one hiccup of an inning, but that frame decidedly shifted momentum.
Facing the top of the Oakland order, Keuchel surrendered three consecutive singles to open the third inning, with Athletics second baseman Jed Lowrie driving in Marcus Semien with a hit to left field that Tony Kemp failed to secure despite a sprawling, diving attempt. Two batters later, Lowrie scored immediately behind Matt Chapman when Stephen Piscotty roped a two-run double that landed just inside the line in left field.
That three-run frame pushed Oakland into the lead, but Keuchel buckled down. He worked around a leadoff double from Ramon Laureano in the fourth inning and retired the side in order for the first time in the fifth. Keuchel struck out the final batter he faced, Athletics catcher Josh Phegley, to close the sixth and completed his line having allowed three runs on eight hits and one walk with five strikeouts.
—Field Level Media