Another day, another loss for the Astros. On Sunday, Houston was swept by the Reds in a three-game set to account for its fourth consecutive loss, dropping the final game of the series 9-7 in 10 innings. This time, the Astros hit but their pitching couldn’t hold the opposite offense, beginning with starter Ronel Blanco, who had a disastrous afternoon.
Blanco pitched 5 2/3 innings of seven-hit, five-run ball with two walks, five punchouts, and two homers allowed. The Astros did pick him up offensively and they even forced the game into extras but a costly Alex Bregman error opened the gate for three runs in the 10th inning.
Blanco’s afternoon wasn’t bad from the beginning. He completed five innings up 5-2 and looking in good shape but the Reds were able to score thrice in the sixth, especially helped by a game-tying, two-run home run by Spencer Steer.
In the eighth, facing Bryan Abreu, Jonathan India hit a key go-ahead solo shot to give the Reds the lead 6-5 and pave the way for them.
This loss leaves the Astros looking so bad in the AL West with a 39-33 record and clearly needing a helping hand. They’re 3-7 in their last 10 and 5.5 games behind first place. Even though they’re still in postseason ground tied with the Yankees for the final wild card spot, this doesn’t guarantee anything for them when they’re not even played half of the season.
The Astros have interesting work to do approaching the trade deadline.
Meanwhile, they’ll begin a three-game series at Minute Maid Park against the Mets on Monday night (7:10 pm CT). Rookie Hunter Brown will face off against Max Scherzer.