Mauricio Dubon's late HR lifts Astros past Athletics
Field Level Media
Jul 23, 2023
Mauricio Dubon hit a two-out, two-strike home run in the top of the ninth inning to break a tie and lift the Houston Astros to a 3-2 victory over the host Oakland Athletics on Sunday afternoon.
Dubon's fifth homer of the season came after the A's fifth pitcher, Chad Smith (1-2), had walked Jeremy Pena with one out in the ninth. But Pena was caught stealing, forcing Dubon to have to perform his heroics solo.
The scoring came immediately after Oakland had threatened in the last of the eighth with the score tied at 2-2 after Zack Gelof doubled and JJ Bleday walked against Houston's Hector Neris.
After a sacrifice bunt advanced both baserunners, Neris got Cody Thomas on a check-swing comebacker, freezing the runners, before he induced Tyler Soderstrom to fly out to center field to retain the tie.
Neris (6-2) was credited with the win. Bryan Abreu, who threw a 1-2-3 ninth with two strikeouts, got his third save.
The A's hadn't trailed before the ninth, scoring single runs in the first and sixth, only to be equaled by single Astros tallies in the fifth and seventh.
Oakland's first two runs were the product of Bleday's eighth home run of the season off Houston starter Hunter Brown with two outs in the first, and Soderstrom's first big-league RBI on a two-out single in the sixth.
Soderstrom, the A's No. 1 prospect when he was promoted for the first time earlier this month, had been 3-for-26 before getting into the RBI column.
Houston countered with a solo homer by Yainer Diaz, his 11th, in the fifth and a bases-loaded walk drawn by Corey Julks in the seventh.
With the score tied 2-2, Sam Moll replaced Tayler Scott with the bases still loaded in the seventh and got Kyle Tucker to ground out to end the inning.
Both starting pitchers performed well with nothing to show for it. Brown went six innings, allowing two runs and six hits with two walks and four strikeouts. Oakland's Luis Medina was pulled after five innings, having given up just one run on two hits with three walks and six strikeouts.
Diaz had two hits for the Astros, who needed just five to record their third win in four games of the series.
Bleday scored both runs for the A's, while Jordan Diaz added a double and a single.
Jeremy Pena (by Scott), Corey Julks (by Smith)
Luis Medina 93-59, Sam Long 12-7, Tayler Scott 23-13, Sam Moll 10-6, Chad Smith 25-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls -
Luis Medina 2-2, Sam Long 1-2, Tayler Scott 0-1, Sam Moll 1-1, Chad Smith 3-1
Batters Faced -
Luis Medina 20, Sam Long 4, Tayler Scott 5, Sam Moll 3, Chad Smith 7
Inherited Runners-Scored -
Tayler Scott 1-1, Sam Moll 3-0, Chad Smith 1-0
Sunday, July 23, 2023 4:07 PM ET Location: Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Umpires:
Home - Marvin Hudson, First - Hunter Wendelstedt, Second - John Tumpane, Third - Ryan Blakney Temperature: 72 °
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