Cole struggles again as Pirates fall to Astros

PITTSBURGH (AP) – A solid road trip kept the Houston Astros on the right path toward a playoff spot.

Evan Gattis hit his 20th home run and Carlos Correa got two hits and scored twice, leading Collin McHugh and the Astros over the Pittsburgh Pirates 5-4.

The Astros won the interleague matchup between wild-card contenders. They went 5-2 on a trip that began in Baltimore.

“I’m really proud of our guys. We have a small margin of error these days and we’ve responded by playing well,” manager A.J. Hinch said.

McHugh (8-10) gave up three runs in five innings, ending an 0-4 rut in his last five starts. Ken Giles closed for his fifth save.

Gerrit Cole (7-9) allowed five runs in five innings. He has a 6.07 ERA through five August starts.

Pittsburgh has lost five of six.

“I’ve been trying to look at approaches and maybe see how I can use my stuff better. I thought today there were some good steps in the right direction: some good sliders, some good curveballs for strikes,” he said.

Athletics 5, Indians 1

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) – Kendall Graveman pitched into the seventh inning to become Oakland’s first 10-game winner this season, and the Athletics beat the Cleveland Indians 5-1 Wednesday to win the series.

The A’s took two of three games from the AL Central leaders, who had swept a three-game set from Oakland in July. Cleveland went into the day with the best record in the American League, but was held to one run for the third consecutive game while being outscored 14-3 in the series.

Khris Davis tripled and scored as part of Oakland’s five-run second inning.

Roberto Perez homered while Jose Ramirez and Lonnie Chisenhall had two hits apiece for Cleveland.

Graveman (10-8) extended his scoreless streak to 16 innings before Perez homered in the seventh. Graveman allowed six hits and one run over 6 2-3 innings with two strikeouts and two walks.

Trevor Bauer (9-6) gave up five runs and nine hits over 6 2-3 innings.