After a slow start, this was a game of milestones for three Astros players, who, with a little help from their friends, were able to take the first game of the three-game series from the Nationals, 6-1, and get to within four games of the Texas Rangers for the lead in the AL West.
The Astros struggled at first against struggling Nationals starter Patrick Corbin until the 5th inning, when the Astros got two solo homers. one by Mauricio Dubon and the other by Kyle Tucker.
Sent that to a galaxy far, far away. pic.twitter.com/GFQGXmn8UR— Houston Astros (@astros) June 14, 2023
With his homer, Dubon surrendered sole possession of 1st place in the “Which starter has the fewest home runs derby.” Dubon is now only tied for first in this category with Jose Abreu, each with three for the year.
The Astros added two more runs in the seventh, one on a solo homer by Martin Maldonado, the other on a two-out Jose Abreu single scoring Jose Altuve.
It was Maldonado’s career 100th home run and ended a 0-17 hitting drought.
Altuve scored his 1000th career run on this at-bat, and Abreu’s previous hit was his career 1500th.
In the eighth inning, the Astros added another solo homer, this one by Chas McCormick. And they added yet another run after Jake Meyers walked, stole second, and then scored on an Altuve single.
Meanwhile, Astros starter Hunter Brown shut out the Nats for seven innings with the help of three double plays and four strikeouts, nullifying four hits and three walks.
Bryan Abreu allowed a rare run in the eighth, but Phil Maton pitched a perfect ninth to secure the Astros’ 6-1 win.
The Astros and Nats play it again, Sam, tomorrow, same bat time, same bat station. Ace Framber Valdez takes the mound for the Stros.