Tony Kemp has career game but Oakland A’s win streak against Houston Astros snaps

In Game 161 of the regular season, the Oakland A’s snapped a five-game win streak versus the Houston Astros with a 10-4 loss on Saturday night at Minute Maid Park.

The A’s got off to a solid start, putting up two runs on Astros starter Jake Odorizzi. Tony Kemp’s four-hit game began with a single to start the first inning, then Starling Marte scored him with a triple into the center field maze of walls. Chad Pinder, who is batting .328 since Sept. 1 with a .925 OPS.

But Paul Blackburn couldn’t contain the Astros lineup. In the first, Yordan Alvarez sent Blackburn’s 0-2 curveball into the right field porch for a go-ahead three-run home run. And the Astros sailed from there.

Blackburn gave up two more home runs, including a solo blast from Jason Castro and one from Yuli Gurriel in the third inning that prompted manager Bob Melvin to pull Blackburn without recording an out. James Kaprielian took over and retired nine of the first 11 batters faced in relief, along with five strikeouts.

But Kaprielian ran into trouble in the sixth, allowing a two-run triple to Michael Brantly that knocked the rookie out of the game and extended Houston’s lead to 8-4.

Before the Astros ran away with it, the A’s flirted with a comeback. When the score sat 6-3, Kemp, in his return to Houston, nearly hit a game-tying three-run home run that right fielder Kyle Tucker robbed at the wall. That was Kemp’s only out produced on the night and his first career four-hit game.

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Author: Shayna Rubin