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Athletics come up just short in 3-2 loss to Astros

Luis Medina turned in another good outing, but the bullpen came up short at the end.

Houston Astros v Oakland Athletics Photo by Brandon Vallance/Getty Images

Luis Medina turned in another solid outing, but the Oakland Athletics came up just short in a 3-2 loss to the Houston Astros.

Medina found himself in trouble quickly after a one-out walk to Corey Julks in the first. Kyle Tucker follows with a bloop single to left to put runners at first and second. Medina struck out Alex Bregman for the second out before Jose Abreu sent a line drive to the gap in right center that Cody Thomas flagged down with a diving catch to end the inning.

Oakland took the lead in the second as JJ Bleday sent a fastball from Hunter Brown 434 feet over the wall in right center for this eighth home run of the season.

Medina settled in after that rocky first and retired the next six Astros in order, with three coming via strikeout.

The A’s threatened in the third as Jordan Diaz singled and then moved to second when Aledmys Diaz was hit by a pitch. Tony Kemp then reached on a fielding error to load the bases. However, Zack Gelof grounded into a 5-2-3 double play and then Bleday flew out to end the threat.

Medina issued back-to-back walks to Tucker and Bregman to start the fourth, but retired the next three hitters, including a strikeout of Chas McCormick, to escape the jam.

Medina allowed a solo home run to Yainer Diaz to start the fifth that tied the game. He came right back though and retired the next three hitters in order to avoid any further damage.

That would be it for Medina who was replaced by Sam Long to start the sixth. It was another good showing for Medina who allowed two hits, three walks and one run over five innings. He struck out six while throwing 93 pitches.

Long worked a scoreless sixth and the A’s retook the lead in the home half of the frame. Bleday got things started with a single off Brown. As Seth Brown struck out, Bleday stole second and then advanced to third on a throwing error by Diaz. Brown struck out Cody Thomas for the second out, but Tyler Soderstrom singled back through the box for his first major league RBI to put the A’s back in front 2-1.

Long stayed in to start the seventh and allowed a bloop single to Madris. He was then replaced by Tayler Scott, who got McCormick to fly out for the first out. Diaz followed with a single off the glove of Peterson to put runners at first and second with just one out. Scott then hit Jeremy Pena to load the bases. Scott then struck out Dubon for the second out, but walked Julks to force in a run that tied the game. Sam Moll then entered and got Tucker to ground out to keep the game tied.

Moll returned for the eighth and got Bregman to fly out before walking Jose Abreu. Mark Kotsay then went to Chad Smith who retired pinch-hitter Grae Kessinger on a fly out and then got McCormick to ground out to end the inning.

Gelof led off the home half of the eighth with a double to left off of Astros reliever Hector Neris. After a walk by Bleday, Seth Brown laid down a sacrifice bunt to move both runners into scoring position. However, the move wouldn’t pay off as Cody Thomas grounded softly back to Neris for the second out before Soderstrom flew out to right to leave the runners stranded.

Smith returned for the ninth and retired Diaz on a ground out, but then walked Pena. Soderstrom gunned down Pena trying to steal for the second out, but Smith allowed a long solo home run to Dubon to give the Astros back the lead 3-2. The A’s went down in order against Bryan Abreu in the ninth to end the game.

The loss drops Oakland to 28-74 on the season. They will enjoy an off day on Monday before beginning a two-game series against the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday.