Astros no-hitter bid falls 2 outs short; A’s suffer 100th loss of season

Sep 13, 2023, 7:21 PM

Michael Brantley #23 of the Houston Astros scores ahead of Shea Langeliers #23 of the Oakland Athle...

HOUSTON, TEXAS - SEPTEMBER 13: Michael Brantley #23 of the Houston Astros scores ahead of Shea Langeliers #23 of the Oakland Athletics during the fifth inning at Minute Maid Park on September 13, 2023 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)

(Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)

Hunter Brown and the Houston Astros held Oakland hitless unless Ryan Noda’s one-out single in the ninth inning of a 6-2 victory on Wednesday night that sent the Athletics to their first consecutive 100-loss seasons since the 1960s.

Brown pitched six innings, Rafael Montero, Héctor Neris and Bryan Abreu followed with perfect innings each as AL West-leading Houston retired 11 straight batters.

Ryan Pressly retired Tony Kemp on a grounder leading off the ninth, then walked Zach Gelof. Nola grounded a changeup past Pressly and into center field for a single.

Seth Brown’s single and Shea Langeliers’ sacrifice fly drove in runs before Pressly finished the two-hitter by throwing a called third strike past Brent Rooker.

Oakland was held to two hits or fewer for the eighth time.

Jordan Alvarez hit a three-run homer and Alex Bregman and Kyle Tucker had solo shots for the Astros, who maintained a one-game lead over second place Texas, with Seattle is another half-game back. Tucker’s home run was the 100th of his big league career.

Brown (11-11) struck out seven in five innings, walked two and hit a batter, throwing 78 pitches. He had allowed 11 runs over his last two starts spanning 8 1/3 innings.

The Oakland Athletics had not lost 100 games in back-to-back seasons since 1964-65 in Kansas City. The A’s joined their Kansas City replacement, the Royals, as 100-game losers this season.

Paul Blackburn (4-5) allowed four runs, four hits and three walks in three innings, dropping to 0-5 with a 9.74 ERA in eight appearances against the Astros.

Alvarez and Bregman homered in a four-run third and Tucker went deep in the seventh against Easton Lucas. Yainer Diaz had an RBI double in the fifth.

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