Coming off first win, Paulino set to face A's

Coming off first win, Paulino set to face A's

Coming off his first career win in his last start, Astros right-hander David Paulino will start Thursday's series finale against righty Jesse Hahn and the A's.

Paulino (1-0, 5.03 ERA) allowed one run on three hits over six innings against the Red Sox last Saturday for his first quality start of the season.

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Alex Espinoza is a contributor to MLB.com based in the Bay Area. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Fiers stays hot, pitches Astros past A's

Fiers stays hot, pitches Astros past A's

OAKLAND -- The Astros won their ninth straight game played at the Coliseum on Wednesday night, using a sixth-inning rally and a strong start from right-hander Mike Fiers to beat the A's, 5-1.

Fiers pitched six scoreless innings, before allowing a run without recording an out in the seventh. He allowed three hits and three walks, struck out five and induced three double plays. The righty won for the fourth time in five starts, and has only allowed two earned runs in his last 20 1/3 innings.

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Alex Simon is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area and covered the A's on Wednesday.

Alex Espinoza is a contributor to MLB.com based in the Bay Area and covered the Astros on Wednesday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Correa does it all with HR, defense, smarts

Astros shortstop makes several key plays in Wednesday's win

Correa does it all with HR, defense, smarts

OAKLAND -- Astros shortstop Carlos Correa might make the headlines for his eye-popping numbers and showstopping defensive plays, but he also does little things that can make a big difference, too.

In the matter of a few minutes in Wednesday night's 5-1 win over the A's, Correa made several key plays. And then he also homered, just for good measure.

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Alex Espinoza is a contributor to MLB.com based in the Bay Area and covered the Astros on Wednesday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tommy John surgery ends Gustave's season

Tommy John surgery ends Gustave's season

OAKLAND -- Astros reliever Jandel Gustave underwent Tommy John surgery on Wednesday morning in Houston, and is expected to be out until 2018.

Gustave pitched in six games this season before being placed on the disabled list April 19 with right forearm tightness. But as the 24-year-old tried to work his way back over the past few weeks, his arm didn't respond well.

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Alex Espinoza is a contributor to MLB.com based in the Bay Area and covered the Astros on Wednesday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Astros' five-run first inning holds up vs. A's

Astros' five-run first inning holds up vs. A's

OAKLAND -- The Astros tagged A's right-hander Sonny Gray for five runs in the first inning Tuesday evening, holding on for an 8-4 victory at the Coliseum to take the first two games of a four-game series.

George Springer jump-started the early rally with his eighth leadoff homer of the season and 21st overall. Houston sent 10 men to the plate in the 38-pitch inning, which featured RBI doubles from Brian McCann and Yuli Gurriel and a two-run single off the bat of Alex Bregman.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010.

Alex Simon is a reporter for MLB.com and covered the Astros on Tuesday. Follow him on Twitter at @alexsimon99.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Martes bends, doesn't break to earn 2nd win

Martes bends, doesn't break to earn 2nd win

OAKLAND -- Astros starter Francis Martes continued to show why he's ranked the team's top prospect.

Martes went 5 2/3 innings against the A's on Tuesday night, allowing three runs on six hits. He walked three and struck out four on 75 pitches. The Astros gave him a five-run cushion in the first and won, 8-4, at the Coliseum.

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Alex Simon is a reporter for MLB.com and covered the Astros on Tuesday. Follow him on Twitter at @alexsimon99. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

McCullers set to return Saturday vs. Seattle

McCullers set to return Saturday vs. Seattle

OAKLAND -- Astros right-hander Lance McCullers Jr. is expected to return from the disabled list and start Saturday in Seattle, manager A.J. Hinch announced Tuesday in Oakland.

McCullers was placed on the DL June 9 with lower back inflammation. He threw a bullpen session Monday and will throw another one in Oakland before starting Saturday, if everything goes well. Hinch was encouraged by how Monday's bullpen session went.

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Alex Simon is a reporter for MLB.com and covered the Astros on Tuesday. Follow him on Twitter at @alexsimon99. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Astros trio on pace for All-Star start

Astros trio on pace for All-Star start

HOUSTON -- With nine days remaining until MLB All-Star Ballot voting closes at 10:59 p.m. CT on June 29, three Astros maintained their top spots at respective positions on the Esurance MLB All-Star Game Ballot.

In the most recent ASG ballot update on Tuesday, Astros second baseman Jose Altuve (2,185,035 votes) maintained second base's starting slot by nearly 700,000 votes in front of Yankees' Starlin Castro.

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Christian Boutwell is a reporter for MLB.com based in Houston. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tucker leads Hooks to win

Tucker leads Hooks to win

The ball was flying out of the yard for Triple-A Iowa on Tuesday, as Jeimer Candelario, Mark Zagunis and Victor Caratini all hit home runs to power the Cubs past Omaha, 6-4.

Candelario, the Cubs' No. 4 prospect and No. 84 on the Top 100, was the last of the trio to join the home-run party, though it was his two-run shot in the bottom of the sixth inning which ultimately proved the difference in the victory. It was the second homer in three games and ninth of the season for Candelario, who's slashed .268/.357/.521 with 33 extra-base hits (21 doubles) and 40 RBIs in 60 games.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Astros use homers, defense to beat A's

Astros use homers, defense to beat A's

OAKLAND -- The Astros rode the long ball to their seventh consecutive victory at the Coliseum, getting homers from Jake Marisnick, George Springer and Derek Fisher in a 4-1 series-opening win behind an impressive Brad Peacock on Monday evening.

Marisnick's fifth-inning, two-run blast on a 2-2 fastball spoiled an otherwise strong effort from A's rookie Daniel Gossett. Making just his second big league start, Gossett was denied his first win despite holding baseball's best team to six hits, including a pair of doubles by catcher Evan Gattis, across 6 2/3 innings.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010.

Alex Simon is a reporter for MLB.com and covered the Astros on Monday. Follow him on Twitter at @alexsimon99.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

#ASGWorthy relay key in Astros' victory

#ASGWorthy relay key in Astros' victory

OAKLAND -- Astros starter Brad Peacock admitted that, on the play that won Monday's game, he thought the tying run would score for the A's.

But a relay from right fielder George Springer to shortstop Carlos Correa to catcher Evan Gattis nailed A's infielder Chad Pinder at the plate, preserving Houston's lead. The Astros didn't allow another run and beat the A's, 4-1, in Oakland.

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Alex Simon is a reporter for MLB.com and covered the Astros on Monday. Follow him on Twitter at @alexsimon99. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Astros' 3 HRs not enough as Sox take series

Astros' 3 HRs not enough as Sox take series

HOUSTON -- In the final meeting between two American League heavyweights until the final four games of regular season, the Red Sox used a pair of homers from Xander Bogaerts to overcome three Astros homers and win, 6-5, on Sunday night at Minute Maid Park.

With the win, the Red Sox moved into a virtual tie atop the AL East with the Yankees. The Astros, meanwhile, still have an 11-game lead in the AL West, but have dropped four consecutive series and went 3-6 on their homestand that finished Sunday.

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast.

Christian Boutwell is a reporter for MLB.com based in Houston. He covered the Red Sox on Sunday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Alvarez makes Pipeline Team of the Week

Alvarez makes Pipeline Team of the Week

MLBPipeline.com's Prospect Team of the Week honors the best performances from the previous seven days. Any player currently on an organization Top 30 Prospects list on our Prospect Watch is eligible, including big leaguers.

The latest edition of MLBPipeline.com's Prospect Team of the Week (June 12-18) is headlined by Triple-A Albuquerque's Ryan McMahon, who led all Minor Leaguers in OPS (1.883), hits (16) and total bases (35) while also tying for the lead in home runs (five) and RBIs (14).

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Astros' missed chances costly in loss

Lineup finishes 3-for-15 with RISP, stranding 13 on base

Astros' missed chances costly in loss

HOUSTON -- For only the second time in 11 games this season, the Astros lost when they hit at least three home runs in a game -- solo shots by Carlos Correa, Jake Marisnick and George Springer. That's because the Astros went 3-for-15 with runners in scoring position and stranded 13 runners on base.

That formula led to a 6-5 loss to the Red Sox at Minute Maid Park on Sunday that left the Astros, who outhit the Red Sox 14-8, more frustrated than anything. The Astros entered the game hitting .290 with RISP, which was second-best in the American League.

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Paulino gets confidence boost in 1st MLB win

Paulino gets confidence boost in 1st MLB win

HOUSTON -- He got a dugout handshake from manager A.J. Hinch, a hug from catcher Brian McCann and later received the game ball. Not a bad day of work for Astros rookie right-hander David Paulino, who beat reigning American League Cy Young winner Rick Porcello and the Red Sox, 7-1, on Saturday night for his first big league win.

Paulino, who was called up from Triple-A Fresno when Joe Musgrove went on the disabled list in late May, allowed one run and three hits in six innings in his fifth career start. With help from McCann, Paulino was in control in throwing 81 pitches (46 strikes) through six innings.

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Astros wear blue to raise cancer awareness

MLB marks Father's Day Weekend by highlighting prostate cancer

Astros wear blue to raise cancer awareness

HOUSTON -- Astros players, coaches and on-field personnel are joining the rest of baseball during Father's Day Weekend and wearing the symbolic blue ribbon and wristbands on their uniforms to help raise awareness and funds for the fight against prostate cancer.

Players are also wearing specially designed uniforms that incorporate blue into the team's regular logos, while the caps are highlighted by a blue shadow tech heather crown and graphite visor. Players also have options from two different pairs of blue-infused socks.

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Perez spins seven strong for Buies Creek

Perez spins seven strong for Buies Creek

Bobby Bradley's season got off to a rough start as he went hitless in seven of his first 10 days and batted just .176 over the month of April.

However, Bradley picked it up by hitting .271 in May, and after another strong performance on Saturday, the Indians' No. 4 prospect is batting .309 in June and .250 for the season.

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William Boor is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter at @wboor. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Astros pummel Porcello, knot series with Sox

Astros pummel Porcello, knot series with Sox

HOUSTON -- Behind homers from Jose Altuve and Carlos Beltran in the third inning, the Astros rocked Red Sox starter Rick Porcello for seven runs and 10 hits and rolled to a 7-1 win in the middle game of the series Saturday night at Minute Maid Park.

The Astros tagged Porcello (3-9) for three runs in the first inning and three in the third inning to take a 6-0 lead, which was more than enough for rookie right-hander David Paulino. The big right-hander picked up his first Major League win by holding Boston to one run and three hits in six innings.

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast.

Christian Boutwell is a reporter for MLB.com based in Houston. He covered the Red Sox on Saturday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Devenski learned value of hard work from Dad

Reliever worked at his father's moving and storage company at young age

Devenski learned value of hard work from Dad

HOUSTON -- Chris Devenski learned the value of hard work at an early age, accompanying his father, Mike Devenski Jr., who owns a moving and storage company in Artesia, Calif., on jobs while growing up. He'd carry and tape up boxes before graduating to bigger tasks as he grew older and stronger. It was tough work and early mornings.

Devenski, the Astros' ace relief pitcher, would get paid in cash or meals -- or even sneakers -- which is all a growing teenager really needs anyway. Along the way, Devenski developed into an accomplished pitcher, and he used his father's worth ethic to excel on the diamond. So when Mike Devenski got a chance to see Chris pitch in the big leagues for the first time last year, it was a moment neither of them will forget.

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for M/LB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Richard Justice

Barnes-Springer friendship goes beyond lineups

Barnes-Springer friendship goes beyond lineups

HOUSTON -- When Astros outfielder George Springer and Red Sox reliever Matt Barnes met after the game Friday night, the at-bat didn't come up.

"After the game, we're friends," Springer said.

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Richard Justice has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2011. Read his columns and follow him on Twitter at @RichardJustice This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Vazquez tries to throw to third, hits Gattis' bat

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Vazquez tries to throw to third, hits Gattis' bat

At 6-foot-4, 270 pounds, Evan Gattis is a very large man. He makes baseball bats look like toothpicks, and he only needs one arm to hit a dinger. they don't call him "El Oso Blanco" -- translation: "The White Bear" -- for nothing, after all.

Alas, despite years of evidence, Red Sox catcher Christian Vazquez had to learn this fundamental truth the hard way. With Gattis at the plate during Boston's game against the Astros on Friday night, Jose Altuve took off for third, and Vazquez popped up to make a quick throw ... only to discover Gattis' bat in his way.

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After rallying in 7th, Astros fall to Sox

After rallying in 7th, Astros fall to Sox

HOUSTON -- Mookie Betts threw out a runner at the plate in the sixth inning and greeted Astros reliever Will Harris by hitting a first-pitch homer to left field in the eighth to break a tie and send the Red Sox to a 2-1 win in the series opener Friday night at Minute Maid Park.

"Just in a small snapshot, there's Mookie's skillset on both sides of the ball," Red Sox manager John Farrell said. "He's a dynamic player."

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast.

Christian Boutwell is a reporter for MLB.com based in Houston and covered the Red Sox on Friday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Harris makes pitch, but ambushed by Betts

Harris makes pitch, but ambushed by Betts

HOUSTON -- The Astros' most reliable relief pitcher for the past three seasons threw the fastball he wanted and was tagged for a homer. There wasn't much right-hander Will Harris could do except tip his cap to Red Sox right fielder Mookie Betts, whose leadoff homer in the eighth sent the Red Sox to a 2-1 win over the Astros on Friday night.

The homer was the third allowed in 27 2/3 innings this year by Harris, who ranks among the top 10 in American League relievers in ERA and WHIP since the start of the 2015 season. It was the fourth homer of Harris' career that came on the first pitch of at-bat (Khris Davis of the A's did it earlier this year).

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Terence Moore

Astros chasing titans of the past

Astros chasing titans of the past

You have to applaud the Astros, owners of one of Major League Baseball's most gifted rosters. Even though they dropped three straight games and lost six out of eight before they pounded the Rangers on Wednesday night at home, they headed into their weekend series in Houston against the Red Sox with the game's best record at 45-22.

Now get this: If their pitching gets healthier and their hitting remains as potent as we've seen all season, the Astros have a chance of reaching and surpassing one of my magic set of numbers in sports.

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Terence Moore is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Inbox: Will Fisher overtake Aoki to start in left?

Beat reporter Brian McTaggart answers fans' questions

Inbox: Will Fisher overtake Aoki to start in left?

Perhaps the Astros have weathered the worst of the storm. After winning 11 games in a row, Houston lost six of its next eight games before righting the ship with a 13-2 shellacking of Texas on Wednesday.

While the offense appears to be back on track -- with a little help from newcomer Derek Fisher -- injuries to starting pitchers Dallas Keuchel, Lance McCullers Jr. and Joe Musgrove are putting a strain on the rotation and the bullpen.

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jonathan Mayo

Mayo: Astros' Bukauskas could be quick to bigs

Mayo: Astros' Bukauskas could be quick to bigs

One of the things that has made the MLB Draft more intriguing to the casual fan is how quickly players go from draftee to big leaguer. It seems that every year, players zip through their farm system and start making contributions on a big league roster.

No one from the 2016 Draft class has made it all the way up yet, though reliever Zack Burdi, the No. 26 pick of the White Sox who was listed as the top candidate to be the quickest to the big leagues a year ago, is in Triple-A. The class of 2015, however, is already making some noise, with four players from the top 10 of that first round -- the Braves' Dansby Swanson, the Astros' Alex Bregman, the Red Sox's Andrew Benintendi and the Cubs' Ian Happ -- making things happen on 25-man rosters, as is fourth-rounder Paul DeJong of the Cardinals. White Sox right-hander Carson Fulmer, also from that top 10, made it to the big leagues in 2016, and is currently in Triple-A.

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Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanMayo and Facebook, and listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Astros sign Cuban pitcher Rodriguez to deal

Astros sign Cuban pitcher Rodriguez to deal

The Astros made a move on the final day of the 2016-17 international signing period, announcing a deal with Cuban right-handed pitcher Elian Rodriguez.

The 20-year-old Rodriguez will receive a $1.9 million signing bonus per MLB.com's Brian McTaggart, which will also carry a 100 percent luxury tax penalty since the Astros are over their international bonus. The club has not confirmed the bonus.

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Jack Baer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

41 years ago, Astrodome was 'rained out'

Pirates-Astros game called due to flooding in Houston

41 years ago, Astrodome was 'rained out'

HOUSTON -- The soft seats and air-conditioned comfort of the Astrodome made watching baseball a pleasant experience in the summer heat in Houston. That was what Judge Roy Hofheinz envisioned when he brought the Astrodome to life in 1965.

The heat and the mosquitoes no longer were an issue for Houston baseball fans, but not even the Astrodome's roof could keep a game from getting "rained out" on June 15, 1976. An afternoon thunderstorm dropped 10-15 inches of rain on Houston on a day the Astros were scheduled to play the Pirates in the Astrodome.

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hernandez homers twice for Fresno

Hernandez homers twice for Fresno

Make no doubt about it -- Bo Bichette can absolutely rake.

Bichette, the Blue Jays' No. 5 prospect and No. 100 on MLBPipeline.com's list of the Top 100 prospects, had a day to remember on Thursday as he went 7-for-8 with five RBIs to pace Class A Lansing in a doubleheader sweep on the road against South Bend.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.