Brett Lawrie’s bases-loaded sixth inning single snapped a 1-1 tie and the Oakland Athletics ended the Houston Astros’ five-game winning streak with a 2-1 victory at Minute Maid Park Monday.

"We need a few of them," said A's manager Bob Melvin, his club having lost 10 of its previous 11 games. "It's not going to exorcise all the demons, but it certainly gives us a night where we can sleep better."

Bob Levey, Getty Images
Bob Levey, Getty Images

Lawrie’s hit off of reliever Will Harris spoiled the major league debut of Lance McCullers. McCullers allowed three hits, three walks and one run and struck out five batters in 4.2 innings of work.

The only run McCullers allowed was on a second-inning RBI single by Eric Sogard.

The 21-year-old right-hander showed the kind of electric stuff he displayed in the Minor Leagues, with a lively fastball and some sharp breaking stuff, but he was too inconsistent and not efficient enough. Overall, it wasn't a bad debut for a pitcher who was in Double-A a week ago.

"It felt good," McCullers said. "I tried to stay on as normal a routine as I possibly could. I felt good out there. My job is to put the team in the best situation I can to hopefully win a ballgame, and that's all I can do."

Reliever Joe Thatcher (0-1) took the loss for the Astros giving up the run on one hit, but two walks in his one-third inning of work.

A’s starter Drew Pomerantz left the game after 4 1/3 innings and 82 pitches with left shoulder tightness. He left the game after back-to-back walks in the fifth inning, but Edward Mujica (2-1) retired Evan Gattis and Preston Tucker to get out of the jam and pick up the win.

The A's bullpen, which entered the day with an American League-worst 4.78 ERA, racked up 4 2/3 scoreless innings following Pomeranz's early departure. After Mujica posted 1 2/3 shutout innings, Evan Scribner followed with a pair of perfect innings in advance of a scoreless ninth from Tyler Clippard, who secured his fourth save of the season

A's center fielder Sam Fuld robbed George Springer of extra bases to lead off the eighth with an impressive catch against the wall on Tal's Hill, helping Scribner lock down his second consecutive no-hit inning.

Game two of the series is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. Tuesday. Oakland is slated to start Sonny Gray (4-1, 1.61 ERA). The right-hander has allowed no more than one earned run in six of his eight starts and no more than two in seven of them.

The Astros will counter with Roberto Hernandez (1-3, 4.12).

You can listen to the game on Sports Radio 1340 the fan beginning with the pre-game show at 6:40 p.m.

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