Scott Kazmir pitched as advertised tonight in his Astros debut. The lefty, who was traded to Houston yesterday afternoon, met the team in Kansas City today to start this short road trip. It only took him 91 pitches to get through seven innings of shutout baseball, scattering three hits and a walk while striking out three. He only had one inning where he had any hint of trouble at all. The sample size is pretty small, but so far this looks like the greatest trade ever.
On the other side of the ball, Royals pitcher Jeremy Guthrie got roughed up a bit. The Astros had runners on base in each of the first two innings but were unable to get a run home. In the third they finally broke through. With one out Preston Tucker hit his third home run in the last three games to take a 1-0 lead. Colby Rasmus followed a Carlos Correa walk and Evan Gattis single with an RBI single of his own to plate the second run.
In the fourth inning Jake Marisnick doubled to right field, and then stole third base. Jose Altuve drove him in with an infield single. Tucker followed that with a double, but Altuve was thrown out trying to score. Correa drove in Tucker with a single to make the score 4-0.
A.J. Hinch turned the game over to the bullpen in the eighth inning. Chad Qualls came in for a 1-2-3 inning. Tony Sipp came in to pitch the ninth and proceeded to walk the lead-off batter. After one out, the next batter hit an excuse me blooper in front of Correa which he threw away. A botched rundown allowed KC to have runners on first and third with one out. Sipp was pulled in favor of Luke Gregerson. Gregerson induced the ground ball from Kendrys Morales which turned into a 5-6-3 double play to end the game and pick up save number 21.
These teams meet again tomorrow at 6 pm in the middle game of the series. Houston will send Scott Feldman to the hill to face KC's Danny Duffy.
Correa extended his hit streak to nine games with a 1-3 night. His average over the streak is .373 with seven RBIs.
Altuve extended his hit streak to eight games, going 1-5. His average over the streak is .382 with seven RBIs.
Preston Tucker also is good at hitting a baseball.
Tweets of the Night
Good work by this undercover agent...
#Royals celebrating #Astros dominant win with fireworks. #behindenemylines https://t.co/bcXxvs0Fdf— Matt Turley (@MattTurls) July 25, 2015
We're number one! And two!
Scott Kazmir lowered his ERA to 2.24 with seven scoreless innings tonight. The #Astros now have the AL's top two in ERA.— David Schoenfield (@dschoenfield) July 25, 2015
Amazing how pitching without a pinched nerve affects the outcome...
Qualls since he returned from DL: 4.1IP, 1H/0ER, 4K:0BB— Thickie Don (@AstrosCounty) July 25, 2015