Fiers bounces back, Astros beat Seattle 2-1

Seattle Mariners' Norichika Aoki is congratulated after scoring against the Houston Astros in the eighth inning of a baseball game Saturday, Sept. 17, 2016, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

SEATTLE (AP) Yuli Gurriel hit a two-run single and Mike Fiers pitched six scoreless innings to lead the Houston Astros to a 2-1 victory over the Seattle Mariners on Saturday night.

Fiers gave up singles to the first two batters he faced, but allowed only one more hit. It was the third time Fiers didn't allow a run in 27 starts this season, and the three hits allowed also equaled his season best.

The Mariners and Astros are both 78-70, tied with Detroit three games behind Baltimore in the AL wild-card race.

Fiers (11-7) was coming off one of his worst starts of the season, giving up seven runs on seven hits in 2 1/3 innings in a 9-5 loss to the Cubs.

''He continues to answer the bell, and one thing I appreciate about him more than anything is how he perseveres,'' Astros manager A.J. Hinch said before the game.

Ken Giles pitched the ninth for his 11 save in 15 chances.

James Paxton (4-7) was perfect through five innings before allowing both runs in the sixth.

Houston's Teoscar Hernandez got the Astros' first hit to lead off the inning, with a comebacker that had Paxton ducking out of the way. Tyler White followed with a double, putting runners at second and third.

After Jake Marisnick grounded out and Paxton struck out George Springer, Gurriel drove both runs home with a single to give the Astros a 2-0 lead.

Paxton pitched through the seventh, giving up four hits with an intentional walk and seven strikeouts.

Chris Devenski relieved Fiers in the seventh inning and gave up singles to Kyle Seager and Leonys Martin, putting runners on first and second with two outs. It was the first time the Mariners had multiple baserunners in the game, but Devenski got out of the jam by striking out Mike Zunino after running the count full.

In the eighth, Nori Aoki beat out an infield single for his third hit of the game, and Seth Smith followed with an RBI double off Luke Gregerson to cut the Astros lead to one. Gregerson kept Seattle from adding any more, getting Robinson Cano to strike out on a check swing and Nelson Cruz with a pop out to second to end the inning.


Mariners 1B Adam Lind missed his fifth straight game with a sprained finger on his right hand. Seattle manager Scott Servais said Lind is day to day.


Astros: RHP Doug Fister (12-11, 4.17 ERA) will start the series finale. Fister has lost three straight decisions, with his last win coming Aug. 22.

Mariners: LHP Ariel Miranda (4-1, 4.10) will make his eighth career start and first against Houston. He has earned the win in each of his last three starts.