A's fall to Astros, 8-1 (w/video)

  • Houston Astros starting pitcher Dallas Keuchel, right, throws to Oakland Athletics' Josh Reddick, left, during the eighth inning of a baseball game Wednesday, July 30, 2014, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

HOUSTON — In the first inning against Houston, Jason Hammel picked up right where he left off since coming to the Oakland Athletics.

That was not good.

Hammel gave up six runs in the first, struggling with his command and Oakland lost 8-1 to the Astros on Wednesday.

The Athletics are searching for the pitcher they thought they acquired from the Cubs, and so is Hammel.

"There's not much to explain; you can see it all for yourself," he said. "I'm a completely different pitcher. Just keep making the same mistakes over and over. Right now it doesn't look to good but it's a long season and I've been through this before."

Hammel (0-4) has made four starts since the A's acquired him with pitcher Jeff Samardzija from the Cubs earlier this month. Hammel was 8-5 before the trade.

"He had trouble getting the ball down again and in the next couple of innings when he got the ball down he was effective," A's manager Bob Melvin told reporters. "That's where the movement takes over, the downhill plane and everything that makes him successful. And he had a tough time finishing guys off when he was ahead."

Melvin said he expects Hammel to make his next start.

Hammel's day ended in the fifth when Jonathan Singleton hit his eighth home run.

Dallas Keuchel pitched a four-hitter for Houston and Robbie Grossman homered to cap the six-run first.

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