Turns out Matt Harrison may not be fully recovered from his early season injury. A back flareup forced him from the game in the second inning, but not before he gave up three runs.
Now, I know what you're thinking. "I didn't know a Matt Harrison played for the Astros."
No, really. This happened to the Rangers. LJ Hoes hit a home run. Carlos Corporan did too. Chris Carter beat out an infield single. George Springer walked three times, had an RBI single and then looked silly in right.
It was a very un-Astrosian game. For the second straight night, Houston banged out 11 hits. This time, though, they scored eight times, tha to contributions up and down the lineup. Jose Altuve continued his torrid pace, doubling and tripling while going 2-for-5. That pushed his batting average to .301 for the season.
Carter, too, had a big night, getting a double of his own in addition to two more hits. That raised his average all the way up to .187. Almost Mario Mendoza-esque. Good job, Trogdor!
But, the star of this game was Dallas Keuchel. The Bearded One shut out the Rangers, striking out seven while allowing seven hits. He also generated ground ball after ground ball, inducing some timely double plays. He also worked quickly, keeping a struggling Rangers lineup off-balance.
Most importantly, Keuchel went the distance, needing just 108 pitches to finish the game. That meant Houston's porous bullpen needn't have been called into action. It was Houston's first complete game since a shortened six-inning game on Sept. 20 of last season. It was the first shutout for a Houston starter since Brett Oberholtzer's four-hitter against the Mariners on Sept. 1 of last year. In the past five years, Houston's only had six complete-game shutouts.
Overall, it was a good win. Now, let's see if the Astros can win another one before another week goes by.