SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Giants manager Bruce Bochy was already in a sour mood after watching his ballclub get shut out for the 10th time this season.
Learning that the defending World Series champions might be without leadoff hitter Nori Aoki for the near future didn’t make it better.
Aoki returned to San Francisco’s lineup Wednesday after getting hit in the head by a pitch five days earlier but left after four innings because of dizziness. He’ll be re-evaluated on Thursday and could be headed for the disabled list with a possible concussion after a 2-0 loss to the Houston Astros.
“We’ll know more tomorrow but he showed symptoms,” Bochy said. “My guess is we’ll have to be careful here.”
San Francisco is already shorthanded. Center fielder Angel Pagan was placed on the disabled list earlier this week with patella tendinitis, and second baseman Joe Panik is also on the DL with lower back inflammation.
Losing Aoki for any length of time would be another blow to the Giants, who went into the day 2 1/2 games out of first place in the NL West.
“There’s nothing you can do except go out there and keep playing, hopefully someone picks us up,” Bochy said. “It’s going to come down to pitching. We pitched very well today.”
Giants starter Chris Heston (11-7) bounced back from a pair of shaky outings to allow one run over 6 1/3 innings. The San Francisco rookie struck out four and matched his season high with four walks but lost consecutive starts for the first time after giving up a solo home run to Colby Rasmus leading off the seventh.
Heston didn’t get much support. The Giants had five hits and pushed just one runner past second base.
“I can take a lot of positive things from the game and just build off them,” Heston said. “I made a mistake to Rasmus. I left a fastball up there and he made me pay for it. I kind of got lazy and it slipped back over the plate.”
Jed Lowrie also homered for the Astros, who stumble back to Minute Maid Park with a slimmer AL West division lead after going 2-7 on their nine-game road trip.
Scott Feldman (5-5) combined with four relievers on the five-hit shutout to get the win.
The Astros right-hander — winless since May 26 — gave up four hits over six innings, walked one and struck out four while allowing only one runner past second base.
Luke Gregerson pitched the ninth for his 23rd save.
“It was nice to squeeze one out of here,” Houston manager A.J. Hinch said. “It’s never easy in this park. It hasn’t been easy for us on this trip. To be able to shake hands afterward was a good feeling. We needed it.”
The slumping Astros needed it on a day they managed only five hits.
Rasmus ended the pitcher’s duel with his 15th home run of the season, a solo shot that bounced into McCovey Cove over the right field wall.
Lowrie homered with two outs in the eighth off George Kontos.
“Their guy pitched well . but we didn’t generate any offense,” Bochy said. “We just couldn’t get much going offensively.”
RHP Mike Leake is eligible to come off the disabled list Aug. 18. He’s expected to be activated and slide back into the rotation.
RHP Ryan Vogelsong (7-8) makes his second start in place of Leake when the Giants begin a four-game series at home against Washington on Thursday.