In a battle of aces, Lucas Harrell got the better of Justin Verlander in a spring meeting on Thursday. Of course, Verlander was only throwing fastballs down the middle of the plate to work on his four-seam command. But, he still surrendered six hits and four runs (while striking out five) and gave up three home runs to these powerful Astros.
Al Albuquerque also gave up a pair of Houston runs and diaper dandy closer Bruce Rondon gave up Houston's other run. The Astros fell behind 1-0 early before exploding for four runs combined in the fourth and fifth innings on home runs by Brandon Laird, Carlos Corporan and Matt Dominguez. Corporan had a second home run in the seventh of Albuquerque, scoring J.D. Martinez.
Corporan and Dominguez combined to go 5 for 8 with five RBIs and three runs scored, while Chris Carter was 1 for 3 with a double. Brett Wallace started the game at first and hit second in the order, but left the game after one at-bat, with Laird replacing him.
Brandon Laird Homerun
Carlos Corporan Homerun (Click to view)
Matt Dominguez Homerun (Click to view)
Lucas Harrell pitched well, giving up three hits in 5 innings of work while allowing two runs and three walks. Harrell also struck out two and generated eight ground ball outs. Brad Peacock strengthened his case for a 25-man spot with a sterling three innings of work in relief. Peacock closed out the game, allowing two hits with no runs and no walks while striking out five
Corporan's Second Homerun
Astros Defensive Play of the Game: Rick Ankiel Throws out runner at third (Click to view)
Play Brett Wallace Was Injured On