Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images
Houston's recent road trip was a disappointing one, finishing 4-6 over the ten-game span that was meant to be full of easy wins. They did, however, finish it with a win in Oakland to take the sting out of it slightly, giving them something to build on in the first game of a ten-game home stand. First up was a four-game series with the Tigers. Here is a quick recap of the opener from Monday night:
Final Score: Astros 5, Tigers 4.
Record: 80-46, first in the AL West.
Winning pitcher: Wade Miley (12-4, 3.18 ERA).
Losing pitcher: Edwin Jackson (3-6, 8.46 ERA).
1) Miley works in and out of trouble over 5.2 innings
Wade Miley's night did not start as planned; he allowed four consecutive singles to begin the night, giving Detroit an early 1-0 lead. After a 1-2-3 second, he would struggle with the top of Detroit's order again, allowing a couple of singles and a sacrifice fly to cut the lead to 4-2.
He settled in over the next couple of innings, working around two singles in the fourth to strike out the side and followed that with two more strikeouts in a scoreless fifth. He returned to start the top of the sixth inning with his pitch count nearing 100 and would get two quick outs before allowing a solo home run followed by a single, prompting a call to the bullpen to end his night.
Hector Rondon was able to get the third out of the sixth, completing Miley's pitching line. That line: 5.2 IP, 10 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 8 K, 1 HR.
2) Astros get a big four-run first inning, but Carlos Correa injures his back
Home cookin' always deserves seconds. 🥩#TakeItBack pic.twitter.com/KN2YmcDuFK
— Houston Astros (@astros) August 20, 2019
Houston wasted no time getting after Edwin Jackson, getting an RBI-single from Yordan Alvarez and two-RBI double by Yuli Gurriel in the bottom of the first. Gurriel would score on an error in the next at-bat, putting the Astros up 4-1 through one.
Carlos Correa must have tweaked something during his at-bat in that first inning, as between innings he was removed from the game with the designation of back discomfort. The Astros were held to their initial four runs until the fifth when Robinson Chirinos extended the lead to 5-2 with a sacrifice fly.
3) Houston holds on late to win
After finishing the sixth, Hector Rondon stayed in the game for the top of the seventh but was met with a leadoff solo homer to start the inning and make it a one-run Houston lead. He would go on to complete the inning with a couple of strikeouts.
Will Harris took over on the mound in the top of the eighth and was able to work around a two-out walk and broken-bat single to get Houston three outs away from the win. With the score still 5-4 going to the top of the tenth, Houston went to their closer Roberto Osuna who was able to earn another save by working around a one-out double.
Up Next: The second matchup of this four-game set will take place Tuesday at 7:10 PM. Aaron Sanchez (5-14, 5.79 ERA) will get the start for Houston and attempt to replicate the success of his first two starts with Houston and distance himself from the poor performance of his third and most recent one. He will go up against Spencer Turnbull (3-11, 3.75 ERA) for Detroit.
The Astros daily report is presented by APG&E.
Luka Doncic had 41 points, nine rebounds and nine assists, and the Dallas Mavericks prevented the Houston Rockets from advancing to the quarterfinals of the NBA In-Season Tournament with a 121-115 victory on Tuesday night.
Kyrie Irving added 22 of his 27 points in the second half for the Mavericks, who had already been eliminated. Their victory allowed the New Orleans Pelicans to win Group B in the Western Conference with a 3-1 record.
Doncic fell just short of his 59th career triple-double. That would have tied him for ninth place all-time with Larry Bird. He shot 15 of 29, 3 of 10 on 3-pointers.
“Sometimes we take him for granted, and we shouldn’t,” Mavericks coach Jason Kidd said. “He’s about winning, but it just so happens he’s a walking triple-double.
”The Mavericks, who trailed by nine points in the third quarter, grabbed the lead for good at 99-98 with 6:25 to play on a drive by Irving. Leading 103-100 with 5:25 left, they went on an 8-2 run that included three free throws by Derrick Jones Jr. when he was fouled by Dillon Brooks on a 25-footer with the shot clock about to expire.
Jabari Smith Jr.’s 3-pointer with 8 seconds left pulled the Rockets within 119-115 before Dallas closed it out.
Doncic played after sustaining a low-grade sprain of his left thumb on his non-shooting hand early in Saturday’s game. He wore a wrap on the thumb.
Doncic made a hook shot from the free throw line after recovering a loose ball near the baseline.
“I’m 2 for 2 in my career on the hooks,” Doncic said, saying the other came while playing for the Slovenian national team against Sweden.
Irving shot 2 for 11 in the first half, 1 for 5 on 3-pointers, with no free-throw attempts. He was 6 for 11 in the second half, hitting 1 of 2 behind the arc, and sank all nine free throws.
“I told the team, ‘Played well enough to win, not smart enough to win,’” Rockets coach Ime Udoka said. “We were extra-aggressive, especially at the end of the third quarter. Had multiple players make a few dumb fouls, put Kyrie at the line and got him going when he didn’t have a lot going. You can be aggressive, obviously, but slapping somebody on a 3-point shot on the arm is an unintelligent play. It has nothing to do with aggression.”
Alperen Sengun had a season-best 31 points for the Rockets, who had six scorers in double figures. Fred VanVleet had 10 points and 12 assists.
The Rockets have lost all six of their road games this season. They went into play leading the NBA by allowing an average of 104.4 points per game.
The Mavericks didn’t use the specially built court for either of their home tournament games, citing dissatisfaction with the quality.
Rockets: Will finish a back-to-back at Denver on Wednesday.
Mavericks: Host Memphis on Friday.