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Astros blast-off on Apollo 11 night. Eagle crash lands on A’s 11-1

Three Cuban homers and another Gerrit Cole shutdown performance brings this game to an early conclusion.

MLB: Oakland Athletics at Houston Astros Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

I used to think that numerology was stupid. I mean, sabermetrics kind of numerology is cool, but numbers having hidden meaning and mystical recurrences? Cmon.

If you watched the game on TV, you’ve already heard all this, but if not, it was a night of numerology. On the fiftieth anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission’s successful landing on the moon, the Houston Astros, (“Houston, the Eagle has landed.”) won 11-1. The Astros scored their 11th run while the broadcast team was interviewing Ricky Armstrong, the son of the first man on the moon, Neil Armstrong. Eleven men batted in that inning. The winning pitcher, Gerrit Cole, got his 11th win of the season, striking out 11 batters. And Yordan Alvarez hit his 11th home run, hitting the ball 1,111 feet.

And you say all that is just a coincidence? Numerology man, believe it.

Back to baseball

Two weeks ago, the Oakland A’s acquired from the KC Royals a pitcher whom they thought was just the missing piece necessary to plug their hole in the starting rotation. He was just what they needed to make their run at the Astros for the lead in the AL West.

Hint: you know there’s something wrong when your pitcher’s first name is Homer. Homer Bailey started for the A’s, and no, he didn’t go 11 innings. No, he didn’t go five innings. No he didn’t even go three innings. But he did give up three home runs... in two innings.

Way to go Homer.

The first one was to Yordan Alvarez in the second inning. It was kind of pitiful by Yordan standards. He sorta hit it off the label of the bat and it only went 103 MPH, and only 410 feet. Not quite a Yodananian moonshot in honor of Apollo 11, but good for the first run of the night. The Astros tallied three more that inning on three singles, two walks and a hit by pitch to make the score 4-0.

Yordan ended the night with two RBI. He has 35 RBI in his first 30 games, more than any other player in his first 30 games, surpassing the record formerly held by the Great Albert Pujols.

The Astros scored seven more against Homer in the third before he could even retire one batter. Alvarez led off with a walk, wise decision, but then Cuban #2, Yuli Gurriel, hit another, yet another, home run, his 19th this year, and sixth in his last seven home games. Gurriel has, get this, an 11 game hitting streak (3 tonight) and has hit safely in 22 of his last 23 games. He has hit 14 home runs in those same 23 games.

But as if that wasn’t bad enough, the next batter, Josh Reddick doubled, Robinson Chirinos singled, and Cuban #3, just back on the roster after 2 months on IL, Aledmys Diaz, hit a shot to the Crawford Boxes.

Welcome back Aledmys.

Normally 9-0 might be a pretty good score, but it’s Apollo 11 night, and Ricky Armstrong is telling cool astronaut stories in the press box, so let’s pile on. Jose Altuve hit a double off of Brian Schlitter, Michael Brantley walked, and then Cuban #1, Alvarez, delivered an RBI double down the opposite field line to left, and then Cuban #2, Gurriel, delivered the mystical run #11, an RBI single scoring Michael Brantley.

Houston, the Eagle has landed.

Mission accomplished.