The wind was really blowing out today at Wrigley, and the Astro hitters took advantage. Trailing 6-3 in the fifth, the offense came alive with a Michael Bourn triple and back-to-back home runs from Clint Barmes and Hunter Pence to tie the game at six. J.R. Towles hit a solo shot in the following inning, and two Chicago errors extended Houston's lead to 9-6 in the seventh. Jeff Keppinger's three-run bomb in the ninth helped the Astros reach a new season high with 12 runs, and the bullpen did the rest.
Pence continues to look great at the plate, and his RBI double in the first stretched his hitting streak to 11 games. He finished the game going 3 for 4, a triple short of the cycle. His batting average is now up to .312 on the year. Bourn and Keppinger also had three hits apiece, and it's great to see Jeff already playing so well. Simply put, the offense was firing on all cylinders as every position player got a hit.
Aneury Rodriguez struggled this afternoon allowing six runs (four earned), and he only lasted four innings. He left too many pitches over the plate, and the Cubs really made him pay. However, the bullpen was able to buckle down and throw five solid innings, allowing only one run in the ninth.
Opposing teams are still running all over Towles as the Cubs stole five bases Monday afternoon, and Tony Campana swiped four of them himself. Robinson Cancel is supposed to catch Lyles tomorrow, and hopefully he can limit the traffic on the basepaths.
What a nice win on Memorial Day to forget about the Arizona series and take game one from the Cubbies. We can revel in this victory and then watch Jordan Lyles pitch tomorrow. Making your Major League debut at Wrigley Field has to be an unreal experience for the 20 year old, and I can't wait to see how he handles himself on the mound. With the draft also kicking off next Monday, this could be an exciting time for the future of our young Astros. At least one can hope, right?