We go into tonight’s game, with our lead narrowed to 2.5 games ahead of the A’s who just never seem to let up.
Going into the game, it was Charlie Morton vs Zack Godley.
To start off the game, Morton was absolutely dominant with a ground out, strike out, and ground out to start the first.
The Astros didn’t answer well, Springer singled and was advanced on a ground ball fielders choice from Altuve. Bregman walked. Marwin grounded out to the first baseman. Yuli walked the bases loaded... Carlos Correa flew out
Wasted bases loaded opportunity.
Morton was locked in striking out Goldschmidt, getting back to back fly outs from Descalso and Souza.
Tyler White walks (you may be sensing a theme here). McCann works towards the all-time record, getting us another GIDP. Reddick hit a home run that scraped over the wall close to the foul pole. George Springer flies out ending the inning with the Astros 1-0 lead.
Morton continued to deal, striking out Marte and Avila and getting Ahmed to fly out.
Jose Altuve walks, then steals second base. Open base? Yep, they walked Alex Bregman. Marwin in clean-up bunts the runners over, avoiding the GIPD much to the dismay of some posters here. Yuli sends a grounder to third both Altuve and Bregman advancing – Altuve scoring at home (2-0), and Bregman getting caught up in a run down being called out of the baselines.
Tyler White walks (yes that’s 6 in 3 innings. McCann with the bases loaded, watches the 3-2 pitch down the middle to end the inning.
Morton seemed to lose some control, hitting Pollock with a pitch ruining his perfect game. First batter walks often turn into runs, as this one does. A single by Escobar brings Pollock to 3rd. Peralta lobbed a sacrifice fly out into center, easily scoring Pollock (2-1). Morton tightened back up, and strikes out Goldschmidt looking. It looked like Descalso grounded out to end the inning, but it’s called Catcher’s interference on McCann. So they get back to it with Morton getting Souza to ground out ending the threat.
Reddick hit a nice liner, stolen by a jumping grab by the second baseman. Springer hit a single out to the outfield... and then things got fun. With Altuve batting, Springer made a huge jump (and a stumble because he was surprised at his jump and Altuve’s hit) making for an easy first to third. Altuve started running, Bregman hit a grounder to third freezing Springer but Altuve’s jump limited it to just an out at 1st. Marwin hit a ball to right scoring Altuve and Springer (4-1). Yuli hit a bloop single out to right field, the ball rolling under his glove, scoring Marwin and allowing Yuli to head all the way to third (5-1). The Diamondbacks pulled Godley and replaced him with Jimmy Sherfy Carlos Correa grounded out to end the inning and the damage.
Morton excited to be pitching with a big lead... immediately gives up a lead off home runs on a mistake inside pitch to Marte. After that Morton shut down the next three batters with a pop out, strike out, and a ground out with Bregman making his patented run outside the foul line and throwing across the diamond.
Tyler White smashed a ball to dead center, falling about 10 feet short of the home run for the first out. McCann hit a grounder right up the middle, easily played and thrown out at 1st. Reinvigorated Woos came back to the stadium, but was shut down by Sherfy with a strike-out.
Morton moved quick, getting a quick fly out from Escobar, a line out from Peralta. Goldschmidt got a single, instead of getting nervous, Morton struck out Descalso to end the inning. Morton was at a solid 70 pitches after 6 innings.
Springer stepped in, and watched the first three balls, then grounded a could be double over the third base line which was stopped but overthrown by Escobar. On his third straight ball, Sherfy hits Bregman (narrowly grazed him). Leading to another pitching change. Bregman hit one straight back at the pitcher (hitting him), he chased the ball, throwing the ball away on the throw to first, scoring Springer (6-2), and advancing both Bregman and Altuve to 2nd and 3rd respectively. Marwin was struck out for just the first out, bringing up Yuli, our RISP specialist. Yuli smashed one straight back up the center, singling in both Altuve and Bregman (8-2)! Carlos watched another strike three. White popped up lazily to first.
That was the end of Charlie Morton’s night
McHugh came in for relief, making quick work of the Diamondbacks. Getting Souza to ground out, Marte to pop out, and Ahmed to fly out on the warning track to end the top of the 7th.
Name that Astro
Hoist that trophy
McCann popped out in foul territory to third base. Reddick battled, eventually drawing a walk on a full count. Springer hit another single, Reddick advancing to third and Springer following him to second on the throw. Altuve grounded a double over the third base bag, bringing both Reddick and Springer home (10-2).
Marwin went down swinging for the second out. Myles Straw got his major league debut as a pinch runner on second. Yuli flew out to end the threat.
Devenski started the 8th with a fly ball to RF, then a simple fly ball to give Straw his first Major league catch. Escobar absolutely crushed a pitch from Devenski into the second deck (10-3), then getting strike out to end the inning.
Carlos grounded out weakly to the second baseman. Followed by a Evan Gattis pop out and McCann weak grounder to first.
Peacock came in strong with a strikeout of Owings, but let up a ground rule double to Descalso. With a walk to Souza then a double to Marte, the score narrowed to 10-4. Followed up with a strikeout of Kivlehan. After a 3-2 count, Peacock struck out Walker to win the game!!!
Reading the discussion, there was almost as much discussion about the Rays A’s game (for obvious reasons). The games were on-going at the same time, The Rays’ jumped out to a 2-run in the lead in the second (gave 1 back in the third), all tied up top of the sixth. Rays responding immediately came back to a 4-2 lead. All tied at 4 in the top of the 7th in this roller coaster of a game. Then boom a 3-run home run in the bottom of the 8th gave the Rays a 7-4 lead. Ultimately losing 7-5, giving the Astros this chance to expand their lead back to 3.5 games.
What an amazing night. First it was great to see the offense come alive at home tonight. Especially with their struggles in MMP. Morton was dominant, ending with 6 IP, 2 ER, and 7 K’s with only 70 pitches when being pulled for the bullpen. The running game was back, and it was great to see the aggressive running in steals and 1st to 3rd type plays. We also got to see the big league debut of Myles Straw.
Great win, 3.5 game lead!!