Astros ride 2 jacks as Keuchel grounds A’s

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Keuchel (11-2) allowed three hits and one walk and forced the A’s into a steady diet of ground-ball outs for his 12th consecutive quality start against Oakland. The Astros (75-47), who began the day with a 12-game lead over the Angels atop the American League West, improved to 18-2 against the A’s since July 20, 2016.

Alex Bregman and Jose Altuve hit back-to-back, two-out solo homers off A’s starter Sean Manaea (8-8) in the third, and Josh Reddick added a two-out RBI single against his former team in the sixth to push the lead to 3-0. Those were the only runs allowed by Manaea, who gave up six hits in six innings.

Astros hit back-to-back jacks

Giles threw a 100.7-mph pitch in the eighth, according to Statcast™. That tied for his highest velocity of the season.

Giles earns his 24th save

Plate umpire Jerry Layne was forced to leave the game in the seventh inning with an injury to his left wrist/hand when he was struck by a foul ball.

After a brief delay, second baseman umpire Dan Bellino put on the gear and finished the game behind the plate. The game continued with only three umpires, with Ryan Additon at first and Mike Estabrook at third.

Athletics: Right-hander Kendall Graveman (3-3, 4.70 ERA) will start Saturday (4:10 PT) at Minute Maid Park. Graveman is 2-1 (3.14 ERA) in seven starts vs. the American League West and is 1-1 with a 7.53 ERA in three starts since returning from the DL on Aug. 3.

Astros: Right-hander Collin McHugh (0-2, 4.88 ERA) will take the mound at 6:10 p.m. CT Saturday against the A’s. McHugh is still searching for his first win after missing the first 3 1/2 months of the season with an elbow injury. Preview >>

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Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter..

Christian Boutwell is a reporter for based in Houston and covered the A’s on Friday.

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

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