McCoy: Astros top A’s in wild ALDS Game 1

Dodger Stadium, one of baseball’s prettiest and most glamorous baseball venues, usually plays to the dimensions of Glacier National Park.

But the Oakland Athletics and Houston Astros turned it into Great American Ball Park-West on Monday afternoon in Game 1 of the American League Division Series.

Home runs flew out of play as if launched by NASA. Six were hit, three by each team, two by Houston’s Carlos Correa.

The Astros, though, scored four runs in the sixth inning without a home run and used that to construct a 10-5 victory.

The TV crew was doing an in-game interview with Houston manager Dusty Baker in the third inning.

Oakland catcher Sean Murphy, the Wright State University product batting ninth. was at the plate.

Baker was in mid-sentence when he heard the definitive crack of the bat echo loudly in nearly empty Dodger Stadium.

“Oh, Lord,” he said, as the ball’s trajectory carried toward Van Nuys. Even before the ball cleared the center field wall, Baker added, “The ball is flying out of here. I played here eight years and never saw the ball carry like it is now.”

That home run gave Oakland a 3-0 lead after Khris Davis hit a two-run opposite-field home run in the second off Houston starter Lance McCullers, Jr.

Baker was pleased a few mimutes later to see two balls fly out of the park for his side in the fourth.

The first was a fence-scraping home run by Alex Bregman to open the fourth. After a single by Kyle Tucker, Correa launched one 421 feet over the center field wall, a two-run blast that tied it, 3-3.

As Baker said, “Oh, Lord.”

The home runs came off Oakland starter Chris Bassitt, a Toledo native and a product of the University of Akron.

They were the first home run hit off Bassitt all season. In his previous four starts, he was 3-and-0 with a 0.34 earned run average — one run over his last 26 2/3 innings.

No sooner did the celebration in the Astros dugout cease than another one left the yard. Oakland’s Matt Olson cleared the right=center wall leading off the bottom of the fourth and the A’s were back on top, 4-3.

The Astros, though, used a pair of singles to open the fifth to dispose of Bassitt. George Springer led off with a single, his third straight single, and Jose Altuve singled, putting runners on second and first with no outs. A’s manager Doug Melvin replaced Bassitt with Yusmeiro Petit.

Petit quashed the uprising by retiring Michael Brantley, Bregman and Tucker on a strikeout and two meek fly balls.

A sacrifice fly by Mark Canho gave the A’s a 5-3 lead after five.

The Astros, though, didn’t need a home run to score four runs in the sixth. All they needed was a two-out throwing error by A’s shortstop Marcus Semien.

With two outs and nobody on, Semien threw away Josh Reddick’s slow roller, the door swinging wide open for four straight hits and a 7-5 Houston lead.

Springer’s fourth straight hit, a double, scored a run. Altuve’s single scored two and Michael Brantley’s single scored another to push the Astros in front, 7-5.

The home run barrage returned in the seventh when Correa connected for the second time with one out, an add-on run that made it 8-5.

Two more Houston runs in the top of the ninth put it away — a run-scoring single by Correa for his fourth RBI and a sacrifice fly by Yuli Gurriel, lifting the Astros to a 10-5 lead.

After the A’s scored their fifth run, the Houston bullpen retired 13 of 14 and the only non-out was a harmless walk.

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