The Houston Astros and St. Louis Cardinals have played two tight games in St. Louis. Wednesday's game reminded Astros fans of the tactical moves that are missing in the American League, but those same moves almost sank the Astros. Houston's saving grace came from George Springer after falling behind 1-0 in the seventh, Springer blasted a two-run home run to help lift the Astros to 4-1 victory.
Collin McHugh and Adam Wainwright matched each other stride for stride. Wainwright induced three groundball double plays to keep Astros in check as he allowed zero runs on four hits and three walks. McHugh pitched around six hits through six innings, only giving up one run on his seventh hit allowed in the seventh inning.
Springer kept the game close in the fifth inning, gunning down Stephen Piscotty who attempted to score on a Jhonny Peralta bloop single down the line. Springer wasn't able to catch the ball on the fly but caught it on one bounce, spin and fired in plenty of time for the out.
The Cardinals picked up their one run in the seventh inning as previously mentioned. McHugh cruised through the first two batters of the inning. McHugh was attempting to get through the final batter to avoid a reliever for just one out. The pitcher's spot was due up third in the top of the eighth.
McHugh allowed a single to Yadier Molina, he walked Aledmys Diaz and allowed low line drive to Greg Garcia. Garcia's line drive dropped in front of Springer, who hurled the ball home -- just missing Molina for another outfield assist.
The Cardinals led 1-0 and the appears McHugh's fine outing would be wasted by another poor outing by the offense. Carlos Gomez further confirmed it by getting picked up off first. To be fair to Gomez, the Red Birds had thrown over three or four times and the move that got Gomez was excellent by Kevin Siegrist.
Evan Gattis walked to set up George Springer. Springer washed away the seventh inning run and Gomez's pick off with one swing. Springer blasted a curveball from Siegrist to put the Astros up 2-1.
Gomez was able to redeem himself with a base-loaded single in the ninth to score two more runs. Will Harris picked up his fifth save in the closer role.