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Yuli Gurriel ties Astros record with eight RBI game

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First baseman Yuli Gurriel tied an Astros record on Wednesday afternoon, knocking eight runs in a 14-3 win over the Rockies. The only other Astro to drive in eight runs in one game was J.R. Towles on September 20, 2007 against the Cardinals.

Gurriel smacked a three-run home run in the bottom of the first inning to break a 1-1 tie. He added a sacrifice fly in the third inning, then cleared the bases with a double in the fourth. Finally, he brought home a run with a ground out in the sixth. He finished 2-for-4 on the day. Following the conclusion of Wednesday’s action, Gurriel is hitting .298/.333/.539 with 23 home runs, 80 RBI, and 62 runs scored on the season.

Gurriel is the third player to knock in eight runs in a game this season. The Athletics’ Josh Phegley did so on May 3 against the Pirates and the Giants’ Brandon Crawford brought home eight runs versus the Rockies on July 15. Interestingly, Gurriel had just two hits, becoming the ninth player since 1908 to knock in eight runs with two or fewer hits. The last player to do that was Eric Chávez on August 30, 2001 against the Orioles.

Wednesday’s victory marked the Astros’ sixth in a row and their 16th in their last 19 games. They now lead the Athletics by 10 games in the AL West.

Oakland Athletics reverse course, will continue to pay minor leaguers

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Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that Oakland Athletics owner John Fisher has reversed course and will continue to pay minor leaguers. Fisher tells Slusser, “I concluded I made a mistake.” He said he is also setting up an assistance fund for furloughed employees.

The A’s decided in late May to stop paying paying minor leaguers as of June 1, which was the earliest date on which any club could do so after an MLB-wide agreement to pay minor leaguers through May 31 expired. In the event, the A’s were the only team to stop paying the $400/week stipends to players before the end of June. Some teams, notable the Royals and Twins, promised to keep the payments up through August 31, which is when the minor league season would’ve ended. The Washington Nationals decided to lop off $100 of the stipends last week but, after a day’s worth of blowback from the media and fans, reversed course themselves.