Braves 4, Astros 0: Houston's bats felled by Wood

George Springer reacts to striking out in the ninth inning of Wednesday's game. - Scott Halleran

The 'Stros follow a familiar script to another series loss.

The Astros' bats fell silent yet again on Wednesday night, resulting in a 4-0 loss to the Atlanta Braves. The game marks Houston's eighth loss in nine games.

Braves starter Alex Wood shaped the contest for the most part. Drafted by Atlanta just two years ago, the lefty kept the Astros off balance all night, sporting a fastball in the low 90s and a devastating changeup. He needed only 79 pitches to complete seven innings, giving up one walk along the way. With his four strikeouts on Wednesday, the 23-year-old has now punched out 67 batters in 67.1 innings this season.

For Houston, Collin McHugh again found himself the tough-luck loser. Throwing seven quality innings of his own, he surrendered just two walks and three hits. Unfortunately, one of those hits was a two-run, seventh-inning homer by Justin Upton. Landing in the Astros bullpen, Upton's bomb marked his second and third RBIs of the night, the first coming on a sac fly in the second inning.

After McHugh finished his seventh frame, Kyle Farnsworth entered the game for Houston. The tall righty surrendered a one-out double to B.J. Upton, who, a batter later, advanced to third on a balk by new pitcher Darin Downs. Braves rookie Tommy La Stella drove in Upton on a groundout, bringing the score to 4-0.

As for Houston's offense, it mustered just three hits and a walk. The team's best chance to score came on a lead-off double in the first by Dexter Fowler. Fowler was promptly thrown out trying to advance to third on a grounder by José Altuve. George Springer would strike out and Jonathan Singleton would ground out to end the inning. Overall, Houston continued its team-wide slump with runners in scoring position, going 0-5 on the night.

The Astros will now look to salvage tomorrow's getaway game at 1:10 Central. Jarred Cosart will face off against lefty Mike Minor. Encouragingly, Cosart has sported a 2.57 ERA over his last three starts, winning each of them.



--With two outs in the fourth inning, Singleton smacked a ground-rule double into center field. The hit looked like it would result in at least a triple, but the ball wedged itself under the wall's padding, causing Braves outfielder B.J. Upton to raise his hands. Singleton would be stranded on a groundout by Matt Dominguez.

--Fresh off his call-up from AAA Oklahoma City, L.J. Hoes started the game in left field. He went 0-3 with a strikeout.

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