Yes, The Astros pounded the Chicago White Sox for the second straight night, once again scoring 10 runs on 13 hits. Meanwhile Astros pitching continued its dominance, allowing only 4 hits and one run. Josh Reddick accounted for half the Astros’ runs, slamming two home runs, including his second grand slam in the young season.
This game was all but over by the second inning, as the Astros scored 4 runs in the top of the first and another 4 in the top of the second.
Scoring in the first came from an RBI single by Carlos Correa scoring George Springer, an RBI sacrifice fly by Yuli Gurriel, scoring Jose Altuve on a close play at home, and culminating in a two out ground rule double by Marwin Gonzalez, plating Reddick and Correa.
Scoring in the second all came on one hit, Josh Reddick’s second grand slam of the year, following three straight walks by the White Sox starter Lucas Giolito.
Giolito was a great friend to the Astros on this night, giving up 7 walks in the only two innings he completed. He also surrendered 5 hits, for a WHIP of 6 for those two innings. Still, Astros hitters must have felt some relief at his departure, as he frequently missed his location by several feet.
The Astros completed their scoring with an Altuve RBI single in the third and another Reddick home run in the fourth, a solo shot, his sixth of the year, tying him for second in the AL.
Meanwhile Dallas Keuchel cruised for his second game in a row, maintaining a shutout and striking out 6 until the fifth inning, when Trayce Thompson poked a home run over the right field fence. The homer broke the streak of consecutive innings without surrendering an earned run by Astros starters at 27 innings. After a shaky start this season, Keuchel has given up only 3 earned runs in his last 14 innings of work. He earned his first win and is now 1-3 for the year.
Hector Rondon replaced Keuchel, pitching a scoreless seventh, followed by scoreless frames in the eighth and ninth by Brad Peacock and Tony Sipp respectively.
The Astros have now won five straight games, and have outscored the opposing teams 40-5 during this span. In the last two games they have gone 10-19 with runners in scoring position. Their 1-4 hitters, Springer, Altuve, Correa and Reddick, have improved their OPS’s during this span 61, 92, 136, and 67 points respectively. Currently Reddick leads the team in OPS at .963, with Correa close behind at .959.
The Astros are 15-7 and in first place in the AL West.
Expect a better challenge tomorrow, as the White Sox throw out right hander Reynaldo Lopez. Although winless thus far, he sports a stingy 1.42 ERA. Game time is 1:10 PM.
Question: Although Brad Peacock has managed to escape his last two outings without surrendering any runs, in the two outings before that he gave up 3 home runs in two innings. Tonight he walked 2 batters, and threw only 7 strikes in 22 pitches. Is Peacock a concern this year? Is he due for regression?
Box Score here