The Astros headed to Southern California to face the Padres hoping to keep their winning streak alive. There was a little something for everyone tonight. If you like pitcher's duels, the first half of the game was for you. If you like lots of scoring, well, if you hung around long enough that showed up too.
With Collin McHugh and James Shields facing each other, you had to expect that scoring would be at a premium, and through the first four innings it was. It looked like one of those games where the first mistake might cost someone the game. Shields blinked first, giving up a home run to Jed Lowrie, number 4 on the season, to give the Astros a 1-0 lead. Early on, the pitching on both sides was stellar. Shields had struck out 8, and Mchugh had only given up 2 infield singles with 5 K's.
In the fifth inning the offense came alive for both teams. In the top half, the Astros scored two runs on a single by Jake Marisnick, a double by Jose Altuve, and a single by Luis Valbuena to take a 3-0 lead. In the bottom of the inning, the Padres got to McHugh. After singles by Alexi Amarista and Shields, Wil Myers hit a bases clearing double to left, and Yangervis Solarte followed with an RBI single to tie the game at three.
In the top of the 7th, Jason Castro hit his 2nd homer of the season to retake the lead. But in the bottom half of the inning Josh Fields pitched well, but was the victim of an infield hit, and a bad route on a fly ball that tied the game again at four. Pat Neshek came to get the last 2 outs, getting the number 3 and 4 hitters to ground out and end the threat.
In previous seasons, this is where I knew it probably wasn't in the cards to win, but this team has been resilient lately, and in the 8th they took control of the game. George Springer and Lowrie started off with walks. Springer stole third, and the catcher's throw sailed into left field, allowing him to come across with the go-ahead run. Colby Rasmus, who up until this point had only been responsible for 3 strikeouts and a couple of poor decisions in the field, totally redeemed himself by driving in Lowrie. He would later score on a Chris Carter double. They would tack on two more in the 9th on Rasmus' 2-run homer to make the score 9-4.
The bullpen shut down the Padres in the last 2 innings to finish out the game, and run the current winning streak to 4 games. Their record on this road trip is 6-1. Let's all stay up late again tomorrow, when these two go at it again. Roberto Hernandez will face off against Tyson Ross.
Springer didn't have a hit, but walked 3 times, stole 3 bases, and scored 2 runs. YAY OBP!
Gattis had to sit since we were in an NL park, but got to pinch hit. He hit a hard liner right at the first baseman.
This is the 4th 3-homer game on the season. Astros have won all four.
McHugh's personal winning streak (dating back to last season) ends at 8, as he got the no-decision. The team has won all his starts in 2015. The last time they lost one of his starts was 8/23/2014.
A winning April is guaranteed now...12-7 with 3 games left in the month.
TWEET OF THE NIGHT
#Astros 12th season win 2015 - game 19 2014 - game 38 2013 - game 43 2012 - game 27 2011 - game 29 2010 - game 33 2009 - game 30— Ace of MLB Stats (@AceballStats) April 28, 2015