By Brett Dolan

The Houston Astros have kick started their 2017 campaign by racking up wins against American League West Division foes. Saturday night was the exception. Oakland snapped a five-game losing streak with a 2-1 victory at Minute Maid Park behind a pair of solo home runs from Khris Davis and Jed Lowrie.

The loss dropped the Astros to 11-4 against divisional opponents. The lone run came on a Jose Altuve home run in the eighth inning after A’s starter Andrew Triggs had departed the game, throwing seven scoreless frames.

“They (Oakland) won virtually every big moment of the game,” said Astros manager A.J. Hinch. “Credit to him (Triggs) for pitching out of trouble in the first and the third and the fourth. We just couldn’t quite figure him out. We never looked comfortable against him.”

Oakland started the scoring with a Jed Lowrie home run in the fourth. The blast ended a streak of 8.1 consecutive hitless innings thrown by Houston starter Joe Musgrove dating back to his previous start against Tampa Bay.

The run was the only blemish in 6.1 innings of work from Musgrove. The Astros bats didn’t provide much help to support his effort.

“With our offense they can spark a big inning at any time,” Musgrove said. “Every time I go out there I am just trying to keep us in the game as long as I can and give us a chance to put up that one big inning and tonight we didn’t do that.”

Davis provided an insurance run, with another solo homer in the eighth. It was his 10th home run of the season and the fifth against Astros pitching.

“He’s 40 plus homers in the big leagues, it’s not a secret,” Hinch said. “We know that when he makes contact there is a chance for it to leave the ballpark.”

The Astros will go for the series win Sunday afternoon with Dallas Keuchel pitching in a 1:10 p.m. start at Minute Maid.



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