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Framber Valdez Meltdown Dooms Astros. Fall to Angels 7-2

Pena homer only bright spot in dismal offensive performance

MLB: Los Angeles Angels at Houston Astros Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

You never know with Framber Valdez. Does Framberin mean baffling opposing batters? Or does Framberin mean poor command and lots of runs for the opposing offense?

It was bad Framber tonight.

Valdez and the Astros were dominated this evening by the Angels, the killer blows being five straight hits and five runs in the fifth that buried the Astros. But let's not let the dormant offense off the hook either. The Astros managed only six hits; happily one was a seventh-inning solo homer by rookie Jeremy Pena, who continues to impress.

The Angels opened the scoring in the second with a Kurt Suzuki walk, who advanced to third on a Jo Adell double, and scored on a Brandon Marsh sac fly.

The Astros answered in the third when Alex Bregman doubled home Pena, who reached base on a catcher’s interference.

But the Angels re-took the lead in the fourth inning on two walks and a Jo Adell single that ricocheted off the glove of Yuli Gurriel. The inning could have been worse for the Astros. With no outs, Jack Mayfield was thrown out by a perfect laser from Kyle Tucker in right field, robbing Mayfield of what looked like an easy double.

The Angels broke the game open in the fifth with five runs on five singles and a double. Four of the runs were attributed to Valdez and two of the hits and one of the runs were scored against reliever Bryan Abreu. The inning ended mercifully for the Astros when Brandon Marsh was thrown out attempting to steal second.

Framber Valdez finished with 4.1 innings pitched, six runs on eight hits, four walks, and only three strikeouts. Against the eight hits he allowed were only six groundouts, a low number for Valdez. He lost several hitters after having them down on 0 - 2 counts.

After Abreu, the Astros bullpen managed to shut down the Angels’ bats. Rookies Ronel Blanco and Parker Mushinski combined for two scoreless innings in the seventh and eighth innings, and Pedro Baez closed out the Halos with a perfect ninth. Still, his season ERA stands at 11.57 after this, his only successful inning of the season.

Besides Pena, another silver lining in the game was the two-hit night by Chas McCormick, as the inexperienced and un-pedigreed center field tandem of Jose Siri and McCormick continue to lead the team offensively while making sparkling defensive plays almost every night

The Astros go for a series win behind the shakiest arm in the Astros’ starting stable, that of Jake Odorizzi. Early game starts at 5:40.

Box Score And Videos Here.