Correa cranks two home runs, A's lose road series to Astros

Correa cranks two home runs, A's lose road series to Astros


HOUSTON -- Carlos Correa homered twice and drove in four runs and the Houston Astros got a 6-1 win over the Oakland Athletics on Thursday.

Correa's two-run shot in the fourth put the Astros up 2-1. He extended the lead to 5-1 with a two-run homer to straightaway center field with no outs in the sixth inning to chase rookie Daniel Gossett (1-3).

It was the fourth career multi-home run game for Correa, who has reached safely in a career-high 17 straight games, and his first this season.

The victory improves first-place Houston to 10-2 against the Athletics this season and 17-2 against them since July 20, 2016.

Houston starter Brad Peacock (5-1) allowed two hits, one run and struck out seven but lasted only five innings after tying a career high by walking six.

Gossett, who was making his fourth major league start, allowed seven hits and five runs in five innings for his second loss to the Astros in 10 days.

Josh Reddick had two hits, scored twice and drove in a run with a sacrifice fly in the seventh.

The Athletics went 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position and left 11 on base as they lost for the second straight day.

Ryon Healy and Matt Olson hit consecutive singles to start the fourth inning before Josh Phegley walked to load the bases. Peacock struck out Jaycob Brugman before Adam Rosales grounded into a force out that left Olson out at third and scored Healy to make it 1-0.

Gossett didn't allow a baserunner until Reddick doubled with one out in the fourth inning. He retired Jose Altuve before Correa's 15th homer this season landed in the bullpen in right field to give Houston a 2-1 lead.

Singles by Evan Gattis and Marwin Gonzalez and a walk by Alex Bregman loaded the bases for Houston with no outs in the fifth. After a short visit to the mound, Gossett struck out Jake Marisnick before inducing a double play by George Springer to wriggle out of the jam.

Reddick singled to start Houston's sixth before scoring on a double by Altuve to push the lead to 3-1 before Correa's second home run.


Athletics: Manager Bob Melvin expects RHP Jharel Cotton to start on Saturday after his scheduled start on Thursday was pushed back because of a blister on his right thumb.

Astros: RHP Charlie Morton (strained back muscle) threw a bullpen session on Thursday, but the Astros are still unsure if he'll need a third rehabilitation start or if he'll come off the disabled list to start on Sunday. ... LHP Dallas Keuchel (pinched nerve in neck) is throwing catch and making "slow and steady" progress toward a return according to manager A.J. Hinch. But he hasn't yet been cleared to throw off the mound and Hinch doesn't have a timetable for when that will happen.


Athletics: Sonny Gray (3-3, 4.45 ERA) will start for Oakland on Friday when they open a three-game series against Atlanta. Gray allowed four hits and two runs - one earned - in seven innings of a 5-3 win over the White Sox in his previous start.

Astros: Lance McCullers (7-1, 2.53) is scheduled to start for Houston in the opener of a three-game series against the Yankees on Friday. McCullers came off the disabled list and allowed four hits and one run while fanning eight in five innings of a win over Seattle in his previous start.

A's prospect Kyler Murray's Heisman campaign could make future murky


A's prospect Kyler Murray's Heisman campaign could make future murky

When the A's selected Kyler Murray with the ninth overall pick of this year's MLB Draft, they knew he was a good football player. But they might not have known he was this good.

In three games as Oklahoma's starting quarterback, Murray has emerged as a top Heisman Trophy candidate, leading the fifth-ranked Sooners to three straight blowout wins. The 21-year-old junior has thrown for eight touchdowns and run for two more, compiling a passer rating of 199.9, the sixth-best mark in the country.

Murray is undeniably electric with the football in his hands, both running and passing. He has been named Big 12 Offensive Player of the Week two times in three weeks.

Murray has also garnered national praise as football fans continue to fall in love with his talent. That begs the question: What if Kyler Murray decides he wants to keep playing football?

The A's and Murray agreed to a $4.66 million dollar contract, which allowed the multi-sport athlete to play one more season of football before committing to baseball full-time. Of course $4.66 million is a lot of money, but compare that to the 4-year, $33 million NFL contract former Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield signed with the Cleveland Browns. Other top-10 quarterbacks from the 2018 draft will receive $30 million, $21 million, and $17 million respectively. 

Mayfield won the Heisman Trophy last season with the Sooners and was drafted first overall by the Browns. All he did Thursday night was lead Cleveland to its first win in 635 days, going 17-of-23 for 201 yards in just over two quarters.

The knock on Murray from a football standpoint is his lack of size. He is listed at 5-foot-10, which is obviously very small for an NFL quarterback. But it's not completely unheard of. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson is just 5-foot-11 and future Hall of Famer Drew Brees is barely six feet tall.

A's fans shouldn't be worried yet. Murray is still not projected on any significant NFL Draft boards, and the fact he hired Scott Boras as his agent shows he is committed to a baseball career.

But stay tuned.  The longer he stays in the Heisman race, the more professional football -- or even a return to Oklahoma for his senior season -- could tempt him.

A's slugger Khris Davis sets career-high in homers with 400-foot blast

A's slugger Khris Davis sets career-high in homers with 400-foot blast

A's slugger Khris Davis entered Friday as the MLB leader in home runs. He added to that lead with a milestone.

In the bottom of the first against the Twins, Davis crushed a two-run, 407-foot bomb to right center for his career-high 44th home run of the season. 

Davis' dinger moved him three homers clear of Boston Red Sox star J.D. Martinez for the major-league lead. If Davis keeps Martinez in the rearview mirror, he'll add another milestone to his resume: Davis would become the first A's player to lead the majors in home runs since Mark McGwire in 1996.

In fact, Davis' 44 homers this season are more than all but five players in A's history. Davis only needs one more home run to surpass Jose Canseco and Jimmie Foxx for sixth place on the franchise's single-season home run list. 

If he continues to climb the club's charts, maybe the rest of the baseball world will finally start to take notice