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Astros Pull Out Win in 11 Inning Thriller, 4-3 over Rangers

Myles Straw scores winning run on wild pitch.

MLB: Texas Rangers at Houston Astros
Astros center fielder Myles Straw (3) scores on a wild pitch as Texas Rangers relief pitcher Brett Martin (59) is late with the tag
Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

In the first game of the Angels series, a 5-4 loss, I said it was typical of many Astros losses. Tonight’s game looked like it was going to follow the same pattern. A game the Astros should have won but were going to throw away due to sloppy plays and missed opportunities.

Except tonight the other team threw the game away. Literally. With two out in the bottom of the eleventh inning and weak hitting Chas McCormick batting, Rangers pitcher Brett Martin threw a wild pitch that handed the Astros the 4 - 3 win in extra innings.

The Astros out-hit the Rangers 11- 4. Yet all their runs in regulation were scored in the second inning on a three-run Jose Altuve double. However, Altuve himself short-circuited the rally by getting doubled up on second on a long Michael Brantley flyout.

In the third, fourth, and fifth innings the Astros had runners on second and/or third with no outs and could not score

This was a game the Astros SHOULD have won. But then it looked like yet another game the Astros would fritter away. In the end it was the Rangers who snatched defeat from victory.

In the tenth inning it looked like Astro reliever Bryan Abreu was going to hand the game to the Rangers. He threw a wild pitch that advanced the runner on second to third with no outs. He then walked Andy Ibanez.

But then a miracle occurred. Kris Davis hit a grounder to third baseman Alex Bregman that forced the runner on third to hold, and then Bregman whipped the ball to second baseman Altuve who completed the 5-4-3 double play.

Bryan Abreu, who seemed to have trouble throwing the ball 55 feet, managed to strike out Nick Solis for the third out.

The Astros blew yet another opportunity in the bottom of the tenth when they had bases loaded with one out. Myles Straw, whom the Rangers had chosen to face by intentionally walking the previous two batters, hit a fly ball to medium right field.

It looked long enough to score the runner from third on a sacrifice.

But Joey Gallo threw a bullet home that just beat pinch-runner Chas McCormick by an inch or two.

Brooks Raley held the Rangers in the eleventh, but after Jason Castro advanced the lead runner to third with one out, Michael Brantley struck out. It seemed like yet another lost opportunity, but with the bases loaded, Chas McCormick hung in there long enough for Rangers pitcher Brett Martin to throw the wild pitch that scored Myles Straw, giving the Astros the 4-3 win.

Astros starter Cristian Javier was very shaky to start the game, allowing a lead-off homer, and then a run in each of the second and third innings. After that he settled down nicely, completing seven innings and getting six strikeouts. Ryne Stanek, Ryan Pressly, Bryan Abreu and Brooks Raley kept the Rangers off the board after Javier left, setting up the 11th inning fireworks.

It was an anticlimactic finish, but fitting that the game wasn't won with a clutch hit but by a mistake.

Still, we’ll take the win.

Box score and videos HERE.