The Astros pitching staff for the third straight night surrendered nine or more runs, or a run per inning pitched. In the last two games in Arlington it was mostly the starting pitching that put the games out of reach, but tonight there was blame to spread all around.
As in the two games in Arlington, the opposition started the game by attaching crooked numbers to the scoreboard in the first inning. Brad Peacock got off to a rocky start, walking the first batter, but appeared to be safe from trouble when the next batter grounded into a double play. But Nelson Cruz would reach on an infield single, Eddie Rosario would single him to third, and C.J. Cron would plate them both with a double to deep right field.
This would establish a pattern for the game, as the Twins would score eight of their nine runs with two outs.
In the second inning Peacock would surrender a lead off home run to former Astro Jason Castro, which would be the last run surrendered by Peacock before leaving the game after the fifth inning.
The Astros would score their first run in the fourth. Following a Michael Brantley lead off bunt single, who advanced on a fielder’s choice, Josh Reddick singled him in. Reddick was later thrown out at home for out three on a Tyler White double.
Reddick was three for four in this game, and currently is hitting .365, with a .879 OPS.
Minnesota effectively put the game out of reach in the sixth inning with four runs on four hits and a walk, all on rookie Josh James. The killer was a Jorge Polanco single with men on second and third, and when Josh Reddick misplayed the ball, Polanco advanced to third. He would score on another Nelson Cruz infield hit, although some would say Tyler White should have scooped the long throw by Carlos Correa from the hole behind shortstop. He unsuccessfully tried to swipe the short hop, allowing Polanco to score from third.
For his two innings, Josh James allowed three earned runs, four hits and a walk. His ERA so far is 7.11.
The Astros picked up one of the lost runs with a Michael Brantley lead off homer in the bottom of the sixth, his fourth of the year. It was the sixth straight solo home run for the Astros going back to yesterday.
The Astros would briefly make the game close with a three spot in the seventh. George Springer would reach on an error to lead off, Alex Bregman would walk, and then Carlos Correa would hit them in with his fourth home run of the season. It would be last Astros run of the night.
The Twins added two insurance runs in the eighth on a two run Polanco home run off Chris Devenski.
Tomorrow Wade Miley faces the Twins’ Michael Pineda
Box score and videos HERE