Athletics look to bounce back against Astros

May 25, 2024, 7:22 AM | Updated: 8:34 am

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA - MAY 24: Miguel Andujar #22 of the Oakland Athletics hits a single that scored...

(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

The Oakland Athletics hope to get more of the same from a new weapon when they again seek to break through against the visiting Houston Astros on Saturday afternoon.

After getting outscored 22-4 in a four-game sweep in Houston last week, Oakland put up a better fight at home in the opener of this three-game series on Friday. The A’s held the Astros scoreless in eight of the nine innings, albeit in a 6-3 setback.

Unfortunately for the A’s, Houston strung together eight of its 12 hits — including the biggest one of the night, a three-run home run by Jake Meyers — in a six-run fourth inning.

One day after Daz Cameron made a splashy Oakland debut with a homer among his two hits, Miguel Andujar celebrated his season debut with three singles, two of which drove in runs.

More on Athletics vs. Astros

Once a prized New York Yankees prospect who hit 27 home runs in his first full major league season in 2018, Andujar was claimed by the A’s off waivers from the Pittsburgh Pirates after he’d hit .250 with just four homers in 30 games last season.

Andujar, 29, underwent meniscus surgery on his right knee in March, which relegated him to the injured list for 52 games before he got the green light against Justin Verlander on Friday.

“I’m happy to be back here,” Andujar said after having spent a majority of last season (103 games) in Triple-A. “I feel good. I have been working hard. I just feel real comfortable at the plate.”

Interestingly, his A’s debut came in left field, the same position manned by Cameron on Thursday. He did not play in Friday’s game, a victim of a now-crowded Oakland outfield that includes center fielder JJ Bleday, who homered for the third straight game in the series opener.

It’s possible A’s manager Mark Kotsay will try to squeeze all three hot-hitting outfielders into the lineup Saturday, when his team is slated to go against Astros right-hander Spencer Arrighetti (2-4, 7.16 ERA).

Arrighetti, 24, has benefited from a total of 18 runs of offensive support in winning his last two starts, including 9-2 at home over the A’s on May 13. He limited Oakland to two runs in five innings in the outing, the first of his career against the A’s.

The win over Oakland was the first of Arrighetti’s big-league career. It came in his sixth start, which was about five more than he had hoped.

“Relief,” he said of his reaction to the historic moment. “I feel I’ve been chasing it since I got here. The goal every time out is give these guys a chance to win because I know we have one of the best clubs in baseball.”

The A’s have tasked left-hander JP Sears (3-3, 4.31 ERA) with attempting to prevent a third straight win for Arrighetti.

The staff ace pitched brilliantly in a 2-1 loss at Houston on May 14, allowing just one run in five innings. Unfortunately, his trend of alternating good and bad starts continued in his most recent outing, an 8-4 loss at Kansas City on Sunday in which he allowed four runs in 4 1/3 innings.

The 28-year-old has faced the Astros five times in his career, four times as a starter, and has gone 1-1 with a 4.21 ERA.

–Field Level Media

Upcoming schedule for the Oakland Athletics

  • Friday, May 24th-Sunday, May 26th – vs. Houston Astros
  • Tuesday, May 28th-Thursday, May 30th – @ Tampa Bay Rays
  • Friday, May 31st-Sunday, June 2nd – @ Atlanta Braves
  • Tuesday, June 4th-Thursday, June 6th – vs. Seattle Mariners
  • Friday, June 7th-Sunday, June 9th – vs. Toronto Blue Jays

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