The Houston Astros had plenty of demons lingering around that as they entered Kauffman Stadium on Friday. Dallas Keuchel was returning to the stadium in which he gave up a key home run in relief in the 2015 ALDS. George Springer was facing the pitcher that put him on the shelf for a long stretch of time in 2015 after a pitch to the hand. The Astros, in general, were returning to the place the magical postseason run in 2015 came to an end.
Those demons were quickly washed away with the crack of George Springer's bat on his triple to open up the game in Houston's 13-4 win. The Astros release the floodgates of offense on Edinson Volquez. Marwin Gonzalez put the first run on the board with a single and Jose Altuve followed with his own song.
Colby Rasmus drove home the second run with the third single of the inning, which was followed by another RBI single this time from Carlos Gomez. Houston led 3-0 nothing after a triple and four singles.
Luis Valbuena walked and Evan Gattis reached on a dropped popup from Alcides Escobar -- allowing the fourth run to score. Jason Castro dropped a strong single to right for the fifth run of the game.
The table was set for Springer in his second at-bat. On the first pitch from Volquez, he rocked a curveball for a grand slam -- putting Houston up 9-0. Houston, in all, sent 12 batters to the plate and scored nine.
Volquez was pulled after an inning plus, he walked Carlos Correa, allowed a hit, and walked Gomez to load the bases. Dillon Gee struck out Valbuena. Gee then allowed a single to Gattis, walked Castro, and allowed a third run in the inning to score on a fielder's choice. Houston led 12-0 after two innings of work.
The Royals got one rack in the bottom of the frame on Cheslor Cuthbert double with a runner on. Kansas City would pick up a run int he fourth, fifth, and seventh innings. The final two runs coming off Alcides Escobar and Cuthbert solo home runs -- both on the first pitch of the at-bat.
Rasmus hit his 10th home run of the season to add the 13th run for the Astros in the eighth inning. Rasmus finished the game going 4-for-5 with three runs scored and two RBIs.
Springer finished a double short of the cycle after collecting the triple and home run in the first. He was 3-for-5 with five RBIs.
Dallas Keuchel did his job for the most part but still showed the signs of a pitcher struggling. Keuchel had to deal with a tight strike zone but still struggled to hit his spots. Keuchel allowed four runs on 11 hits over 6 1/3 innings while striking out two and walking two.
Volquez's line was 11 earned runs (12 runs) on eight hits, three walks and zero strikeouts in one inning-plus.