OAKLAND — Jed Lowrie drove in four runs, Tommy Milone won his third straight start and the Oakland Athletics beat the Houston Astros 11-2 on Monday night.
Nate Freiman added a three-run homer and Brandon Moss had three RBIs for the A’s. Oakland also benefited from eight walks - four in the first inning by Houston starter Erik Bedard.
Carlos Pena had two hits for the Astros, who have lost three straight following a three-game winning streak.
Milone (3-0) had a season-high six strikeouts and didn’t walk a batter for the eighth time in his career. The left-hander, who won an Oakland rookie record 13 games in 2012, pitched out of jams in the fourth and sixth before leaving following Jose Altuve’s one-out RBI single in the seventh.
The A’s, who swept the Astros in Houston earlier this season, needed it after Brett Anderson and Jarrod Parker were roughed up by the Detroit Tigers last weekend.
Then again, Milone has been one of Oakland’s most consistent starters for some time. He’s won five straight decisions dating to last season and hasn’t lost since Sept. 3, 2012.
He got plenty of support from a lineup that struck out 38 times in the three-game series against the Tigers.
Lowrie had two hits after struggling against Detroit. Coco Crisp doubled, walked twice and scored in his return to Oakland’s lineup. Derek Norris scored three runs while Chris Young doubled and scored twice.
The A’s scored six runs on just two hits in the first inning to chase Bedard, whose perfect ERA jumped to 7.04.
Bedard (0-1) had been sharp in his first two outings this season but walked Oakland’s first three batters and then uncorked a one-out wild pitch that scored Crisp. After Josh Donaldson walked to load the bases again, Moss hit a two-run single to make it 3-0 and Freiman followed with his first home run in the majors, a towering three-run shot into the left-field seats.
After Bedard was pulled, reliever Paul Clemens pitched 5 1-3 scoreless innings. It was the longest relief outing by a Houston pitcher since Dave Borkowski went six innings against the Cubs on Aug. 15, 2006.
Crisp also doubled in the fourth to extend his hitting streak to 10 games.
Milone retired 10 of his first 11 batters before the Astros scored in the fourth on Pena’s RBI single.
Houston cut the lead to 6-2 on Altuve’s hit in the seventh but Oakland scored three runs in the bottom of the inning. Lowrie had a two-run single and scored on Moss’ double.
Three A’s relievers combined to blank the Astros over the final 2 1-3 innings.
NOTES: The A’s rested slumping outfielder Josh Reddick, who is off to a 4-for-37 start. ... Injured Oakland OF Yoenis Cespedes (hand) did some running before the game but has not yet resumed throwing. ... A’s manager Bob Melvin said INF Adam Rosales could begin a rehab assignment as early as this weekend. ... The Astros acquired minor league LHP Eric Berger from the Cleveland Indians for C Chris Wallace. ... RHP Brad Peacock, who lost to Oakland on April 5, starts for Houston on Tuesday. He’ll oppose RHP A.J. Griffin, who won his first two starts and is 9-1 in 17 career starts.