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Astros 14, Twins 5: A grand (slam) Sunday

Carter and Singleton provide some big blows as Houston takes a series with Minnesota.

Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

The Astros, as presently constituted, are a pretty good team. It's been a long time since we've been able to say that without being pie-in-the-sky optimists.

Even when Houston's starting pitcher gets into trouble (as Collin McHugh did today with his walks), the team can still win. Even when the Twins hang around and hang around, scoring runs to cut into Houston's lead, the Astros still win.

They did it because of the prospects. George Springer hit a home run. Bob Grossman took two walks, had a bunt single and stole a base. And then there was Jon Singleton.

The Astros had a 10-5 lead in the ninth inning, but the Twins kept hanging around, scoring runs off Houston's bullpen. So, when Singleton came up with the bases loaded, he made sure the Astros got the victory. His second major league home run came in his sixth major league game. It was also his first career grand slam.

Chris Carter also hit a grand slam earlier in the game. Most of the commenters on this site have turned on Carter. Some of the writers have, too. From listening to comments from other fans at the Astros game a couple Thursdays ago, it seems like most of the fan base feels the same way.

But, his first career grand slam shows why Houston keeps him on the roster. Power like Carter possesses can change a game in one at-bat. Sure, the strikeouts hurt and his defensive value is basically zero. But, he does have one elite skill. None of the replacement parts Houston could bring up from Triple-A can say that right now.

It was just the second time in team history that Houston hit two grand slams in one game. The last time came in 1969, when Denis Menke and Jimmy Wynn each hit a grand slam in the ninth inning of a game with the Mets.

With the victory, Houston moves to 4-3 in June and has now outscored its opponents this month 38-37. Since falling to 5-14 on April 20, Houston has gone 23-22. The Astros will look to continue that hot streak with a pair of two-game series with Arizona. The first is in Arizona before coming back to Houston on Wednesday for a two-game set.