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Astros Grind Out Win, Defeat Tigers 7-6

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In a game full of surprises, the Astros came out on top to secure the 4-game series win.

MLB: Detroit Tigers at Houston Astros
Juan Centeno hit his 2nd HR in his 2nd game as an Astro
Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

What a game. The Astros and Tigers played a back and forth affair with both starters and bullpens failing to contain their opponent’s offense. Just take a look at how the win probability swung back and forth throughout the game.

Win Probability by FanGraphs

The Astros win probability was down to 17.1% when the Tigers lead grew to 3-0 in the top of the 4th, jumped up to 77.9% in the bottom of the 4th, dropped down to 36.6% when the Tigers tied it in the 8th, but ended at 100% (if numbers confuse you, that means they won).

As most baseball games do, this back and forth game had some surprising moments and some not-so-surprising moments.

Surprises

  • Justin Verlander gave up 6 ER and couldn’t make it out of the 6th. He gave up 3 HRs all in the same inning.
  • The Astros’ typically reliable bullpen looked pretty shaky. The Astros had a 6-4 lead after 6 innings, but Will Harris gave up a solo HR to Justin Upton in the 7th and Luke Gregerson gave up an RBI double to Jose Iglesias in the 8th that tied the game 6-6.
  • Juan Centeno hit his 2nd HR of 2017 in only his 2nd game as an Astro. Centeno had only hit 7 HRs in 557 games in the minors and majors combined before getting called up to the Astros.
  • Jake Marisnick hit the game-winning home run off Alex Wilson. That’s surprising because, well, he is Jake Marisnick, but also because Alex Wilson had not given up a home run since April 6, 2017.

No Surprise

  • Mike Fiers gave up 4 ER and couldn’t make it out of the 5th. That means Fiers has lasted 5 innings or fewer in over half of his starts in 2017.
  • Marwin Gonzalez had another nice night at the plate with a walk and a 2-run HR off Verlander that gave the Astros their first lead of the night.
  • J.D. Martinez, who has been tearing the cover off the ball since returning from the DL, continued doing just that. He had one HR and narrowly missed another which was so close that it warranted an umpire review but remained a double. He also drew a walk.
  • Ken Giles nailed down the win for his 13th save of the season. While Giles does make things interesting sometimes, he has only blown one save all year.

Other Notables

  • Carlos Correa made his presence felt in his return to the lineup after being out sick for the last two games. He went 3-4 with a 2-run HR off Verlander, and his only out was a hard hit ball caught on the warning track.
  • Evan Gattis had only started two games at DH in May before tonight. With Carlos Beltran struggling to find consistency so far in 2017 (.234/.278/.373), Gattis got another start at DH tonight and did not disappoint. He scored on Marwin’s 2-run HR in the 4th, drove in the Astros’ 6th run with an RBI double in the 5th, and ended the night 2-4.

Winning 3 of 4 against Detroit was a nice way to recover from getting swept by the Indians over the weekend. Additionally, the previously red-hot Rangers just got swept by the Red Sox, so the Astros now lead the division by 8 games.

The Astros face the Orioles next, who come into town for a 3-game series over the weekend that should include the return of Dallas Keuchel and Brian McCann.

Go ‘Stros!!