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Astros batter A’s 9-2 to complete four-game sweep

Jason Castro homered in his first begin again with Houston, and the Astros beat the Oakland Athletics 9-2 on Sunday for a four-game sweep.

Dusty Baker tied Bill McKechnie for 14th amongst managers with 1,896 wins.

Kyle Tucker and Chas McCormick additionally homered for the Astros, off to their greatest begin since 2001. Yuli Gurriel had three hits and two RBIs.

Houston outscored the A’s 35-9 within the sequence with 47 hits, together with eight residence runs. The Astros grew to become the fourth group in main league historical past to rating eight or extra runs in every of its first 4 video games.

“We just had tons of momentum coming in from last year,” McCormick mentioned. “The guys are really hungry. We just crushed them from the first pitch to the last pitch of the whole series. It was cool to watch, cool to be a part of.”

Sweeping the division rival A’s was particularly pleasing to the Astros, who have been taunted on the Coliseum all through the sequence. Houston faces the fallout from the sign-stealing scandal during which Major League Baseball penalized the group forward of the 2020 season, which was performed in empty ballparks due to the pandemic.

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Oakland gained seven of the ten video games with Houston in 2020 on the best way to its first AL West title since 2013.

“You can’t do much better than the start that we had,” Baker mentioned. “You take a quick, fast start anytime. You have to enjoy it while it’s here, try to build off it and keep going from there. We’re leaving out of here mainly feeling good about ourselves with our bullpen strong.”

Mark Canha doubled, tripled and scored twice for the A’s, who’re 0-4 for his or her first time since dropping 5 straight firstly of 1987.

“Look, we don’t feel good about it,” A’s supervisor Bob Melvin mentioned. “A little bit embarrassing. We played really poorly and they played great. We have to turn things around. It’s not just going to happen.”

Castro was again within the Astros lineup for the primary time since leaving Houston as a free agent following the 2016 season. Third on the franchise’s record for video games caught getting into the yr, the 33-year-old Castro is slated for a backup function this season and is probably going to share time with Martín Maldonado.

Castro’s residence run off Sean Manaea (0-1) within the second got here after Myles Straw drew a two-out stroll.

Tucker homered off Manaea within the first.

McCormick added a three-run drive off Yusmeiro Petit within the sixth, his first within the majors.

“It was unreal,” McCormick mentioned. “It was an 0-2 count. Rounding the bases I couldn’t stop smiling.”

Brandon Bielak (1-0) pitched 4 2/3 hitless innings of reduction with 4 strikeouts and no walks.

Astros starter José Urquidy struck out 5 in 4 1/3 innings, permitting two runs and 4 hit.

Manaea (0-1) gave up 5 runs, six hits and three walks in 4 2/3 innings.

Oakland was held to 4 hits.

ROOKIE MAKES MOUND DEBUT

Oakland rookie Ka’ai Tom pitched a scoreless ninth inning — after beginning the sport in left subject. Tom retired Jose Altuve and Tucker on infield pop-ups earlier than Alex Bregman reached on an infield single. Yordan Alvarez then grounded out. “It was because our bullpen was beat up over the course of these four games,” Melvin mentioned. “I just didn’t want to have to use another pitcher.”

TRAINERS ROOM

Astros: OF Michael Brantley confirmed enchancment a day after getting hit in the best wrist by a 90 mph fastball, and Baker is cautiously optimistic. “When he’s coming back just depends on his body and how he heals,” Baker mentioned. “We dodged a major bullet by him having no fractures or a broken wrist or anything like that.”

Athletics: RF Chad Pinder is scheduled for an MRI on his left knee Monday after he was taken out not lengthy after making a leaping catch and crashing exhausting into the fence on Altuve’s deep fly main off the sport. Pinder additionally made a pair of spectacular catches on opening night time. … Sean Murphy (wrist bruise) felt discomfort hitting within the cage earlier than the sport and stays out. … Ramon Laureano (sore wrist) is feeling higher however was held out.

UP NEXT

Astros: RHP Luis Garcia (0-1, 2.92 ERA in 2020) makes his second profession begin within the first of a two-game sequence at Anaheim on Monday.

Athletics: Frankie Montas (3-5, 5.60 ERA in 2020) makes his season debut at residence in opposition to the Dodgers on Monday. Montas hasn’t pitched since popping out of his last spring coaching begin due to a cuticle tear on his proper center finger.

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