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Astros 8, Twins 0: Springer's Return Celebrated With Offensive Explosion

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McHugh pitches great game. Rasmus and Conger deliver the big blows at the plate.

Bob Levey/Getty Images

What Happened

Coming off eight days rest, Collin McHugh pitched a great game to start of this series on the right note.  He pitched 7.2 innings giving up no runs on seven hits while striking out six.  He had great control on his curve, and got a lot of swings and misses on his high fastball.  In the first inning he got a bit of help from his defense to keep the Twins off the board.  With two outs Joe Mauer doubled and Miguel Sano followed with a single.  Mauer tried to score, but once again Carlos Gomez threw a strike to Hank Conger to keep him from scoring.

The big news coming into the game was the return of George Springer from what seemed like all season on the disabled list.  George didn't waste any time as the leadoff hitter.  He singled to start the game and went to third on a hit-and-run with Jose Altuve.  He scored the games first run on a Carlos Correa fielder's choice.

In the second Jed Lowrie doubled to center field.  Two batters later Colby Rasmus gave the team a 3-0 lead with a two-run homer to the second deck in right.

The fourth inning is where the Astros blew the game wide open.  Evan Gattis, Lowrie, and Gomez had three straight 2-strike singles.  After Twins pitcher Mike Pelfrey struck out the next two batters Conger delivered a grand slam about 3 rows back in the Crawford Boxes to put the team up 7-0.  That was Hank's second grand slam of the season, and the Astros third overall.  Conger would tack on another RBI late for the final run of the game.

Joe Thatcher relieved McHugh and got Mauer on a strikeout.  Michael Feliz pitched a perfect ninth to finish out the win.  Tomorrow Lance McCullers takes the hill against Ervin Santanain the middle game of the series at 6 pm.

Fun Facts

The Astros set a new team record with ten hitters with ten or more homers.

This is the first season in team history where two catchers have ten or more homers.

This was only the 16th game that Correa, Altuve and Springer have played together.

Tweets of the Night

Ahh...the gigantic Astrodome...

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Get this:&#10;The 2015 Astros have 10 players with at least 10 HRs.&#10;The 1979 Astros didn&#39;t have any (Cruz led with 9).</p>&mdash; Brian McTaggart ⚾️ (@brianmctaggart) <a href="https://twitter.com/brianmctaggart/status/639983929001422848">September 5, 2015</a></blockquote>

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I agree

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Astros: the greatest situational hitting team of all time.</p>&mdash; Dustin DeBerry (@dkdeberry) <a href="https://twitter.com/dkdeberry/status/639972998301118464">September 5, 2015</a></blockquote>

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And here's this to cap off a happy day...

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">We are all smiling with you George! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/welcomeback?src=hash">#welcomeback</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/astros?src=hash">#astros</a> <a href="http://t.co/Bd3UJVo7cx">pic.twitter.com/Bd3UJVo7cx</a></p>&mdash; Karen Warren (@karenwarrenHC) <a href="https://twitter.com/karenwarrenHC/status/639965334666133504">September 5, 2015</a></blockquote>

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