Astros benefit from shoddy pitching, defense in ninth by A's

5:05 AM, Jul 24, 2013   |    comments
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Houston, TX (Sports Network) - A pair of monumental streaks for the Oakland Athletics came to a close Tuesday night, thanks mostly to miscues in the ninth inning against the team with the worst record in the majors.

Grant Balfour served up the tying two-run homer to Matt Dominguez and Jonathan Villar scored on Derek Norris' throwing error later in the ninth as the Astros shocked the A's, 5-4, to snap a 12-game skid versus Oakland.

Balfour had converted his last 44 save chances, an Oakland record, including all 26 this season, but Dominguez crushed the tying homer to left-center field with no outs.

Balfour, who committed an error that allowed Justin Maxwell to reach second on a single to start the ninth, suffered his first blown save since April 29, 2012 at Baltimore.

Villar doubled to left with one out. Jose Altuve walked and he slipped between first and second when a pitch got away from Norris. The catcher recovered, but his throw to first baseman Brandon Moss was wide of the base. By the time Moss recovered to throw home it was too late as Villar came home to end Houston's six-game slide.

The Sports Network

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