That's more like it. A day after the Astros' longest winning streak on the young season was snapped by the Florida Marlins, the gang got back into the win column by squeaking out the first game of a three game set against Pittsburgh. Starters Roy Oswalt and Paul Maholm both pitched terrifically, but it was Oswalt who eeked out his second victory in as many starts.
The Astros' right-hander was nails through six innings, allowing just two hits while walking none. His troubles found him in the seventh, as many a hard hit ball was served off Pirate bats, including two homers by Garrett Jones and Jeff Clement. Michael Bourn saved another XBH by Ronny Cedeno with two outs in the seventh by making a spectacular play in left center field.
It was a familiar night from the bullpen, as Brandon Lyon and Matt Lindstrom pitched perfect eighth and ninth innings for the Astros. The duo has combined for a 15:1 K:BB ratio through sixteen games- something that has to bring a smile to Ed Wade's face. Had Roy not struggled through the seventh, it looked likely that he would pitch the whole way through for a complete game. 91 pitches in 7 IP tells you that Roy was absolutely cruising.
Offensively, Michael Bourn was top notch once again, walking to lead off the game, singling and scoring a run in the three run sixth inning. Carlos Lee and Pedro Feliz doubled in the final two runs of the game for the Astros, giving our arms just enough working room to get the job done.
A win in tomorrow evening's game could catapult the Astros out of the NL Central cellar for the first time in 2010. Wandy Rodriguez looks to build on his nice performance in his last start against the Bear Children of Chicago.