The Houston Astros began their 10-game homestand in dominant fashion. Thanks to a pair of 2-run home runs from Carlos Correa and Yuli Gurriel, plus a strong performance from José Urquidy, Houston defeated 10-4 the Toronto Blue Jays at Minute Maid Park on Friday.
The bats came alive with 15 hits.
Toronto was the first team to score, with a solo shot from Bo Bichette in the first inning. But after that bomb, it was all dominance for Urquidy on the mound, including keeping Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Vladimir Guerrero Jr., and Teoscar Hernández hitless through his seven innings of work. The young righty allowed just just four total hits, and two earned runs from two solo shots. He walked one and struck out two. He lowered his ERA to 3.51.
Urquidy (3-2) has been outstanding lately, stepping up as a vital member of the starting rotation. He’s notched three wins in a row thanks to only 13 hits and four earned runs over 20 frames in that span. He has basically been pitching to contact, as he’s registered only nine punchouts over that span.
Pitching to contact requires faith in the defense behind you, and in fact, Urquidy was helped in a big way by his defense in this game. Catcher Martín Maldonado threw out Cavan Biggio trying to steal second (Biggio’s first failed stolen base attempt in his career) and there was also this sliding catch by Kyle Tucker…
Offensively, the Astros clearly overpowered one of the most dangerous lineups of the American League. In the third inning, they put themselves ahead with a score of 2-1 with Correa’s 2-run bomb and never lost the advantage again. Yuli homered with a man on in the fifth to make it 5-2. The veteran first baseman went a perfect 4-for-4 with three singles, the aforementioned rocket to left center field, and four RBIs.
For Correa, the game was a pain-reliever pill for him. His home run was his first hit of May. Prior Friday, he was hitless in 19 at-bats with only one run driven in, one walk, and six strikeouts in May.
In case you’re wondering, this was just the second time of the season with 10+ scored runs for the Astros. Gurriel brought in their last run of the game for Houston, with a sac fly in foul territory to drive in Alex Bregman.
Kent Emanuel was the man in charge to get the other two innings after Urquidy was pulled out of the game. He surrendered a 2-run shot to Hernández, but found the way to complete the two frames.
Both teams will collide again on Saturday night (7:10 pm ET) with the Astros trying to conquer their third consecutive win. Cristian Javier gets the nod for Houston, while lefty Steven Matz ascends the hill for Toronto.
P.S.: Yes, the Astros ruined George Springer’s comeback to Minute Maid Park. He’s injured and was seen on the bench, but it still counts, right?