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Game Recap: Verlander Firing Blanks. Bats Blasting Bombs. Stros Take Rangers 3-0

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Verlander 7 inning, 1 hit shutout, homers by Marisnick, Gurriel, Chirinos close deal on Rangers

MLB: Texas Rangers at Houston Astros Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The last shall be first.

Coming into this game the Astros’ wRC+ was 129. The 1927 Yankees, that’s the Ruth, Gehrig Yankees FYI, hit at 126. The Astros’ prodigious production comes mostly from positions 1-6 in the batting order. You know, Springer, Altuve, Bregman, even Reddick this year. Those guys.

Tonight 1-6 in the lineup was two for nineteen with six strikeouts. Luckily, the last three slots in the lineup each had a solo home run, providing four of the six hits for the Astros, and all three runs.

Jake Marisnick started it it with this left center field blast, a barrel job hit 423 feet to right center at 109 MPH. It was his third of the year to go with his double later. Notice what Collin McHugh found afterwards.

In the seventh Yuli Gurriel and Robinson Chirinos went back to back solo homers on starter and losing pitcher Lance Lynn. It was Yuli’s third homer of the year and Chirinos’ fifth. Chirinos remains one of this years’ pleasant surprises, with on OPS remaining over .900 for the season.

Meanwhile Justin Verlander spun another masterpiece, a seven inning, one-hit shutout with eight strikeouts. He threw 101 pitches, 66 for strikes, 21 for whiffs. His ERA for the year is now 2.51.

Ryan Pressly got his eighth hold of the season with a perfect eighth inning, and Osuna got his 10th save with a scoreless ninth. In 34 innings this season this duo has allowed only one run. Pressly extended his Astros record with his 36th consecutive scoreless inning.

Just like last night Osuna got just a little help from his best friend, Josh Reddick, who once again robbed a Rangers batter of a big hit in the ninth.

Spectacular defensive plays have been an important part of the Astros winning formula of late, and here’s one by Carlos Correa in the third inning.

Jose Altuve left the game in the first inning with an injury. The Astros later reported that it was hamstring discomfort and that his status at this time is day-to-day.

Tomorrow the Astros face the Rangers for the third game of this four game series. Gerrit Cole takes the mound for the Astros for a Rangers pitcher still to be determined.

Game time 7:10 CDT.

Box score and videos HERE.