Astros hold on to win the series opener with Detroit

Astros daily report presented by APG&E: 3 hits from the 5-4 win

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

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.

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Houston scored in droves

Astros drub Twins in finale to take series win

Houston's offense showered Minnesota with hits in Sunday's finale. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

After splitting the first two games, with Houston's offense uncharacteristically ineffective in the loss on Saturday, they tried to turn things around with a win to take the series on Sunday. The Astros would bounce right back at the plate, getting hits and runs all through the afternoon to rout the Twins.

Final Score: Astros 14, Twins 3

Astros' Record: 37-28, second in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Framber Valdez (3-0)

Losing Pitcher: Michael Pineda (3-4)

Valdez keeps rolling

Framber Valdez continued to impress in 2021 after starting his season on the IL, posting another quality start with a win against the Twins. After four scoreless frames, he allowed a solo homer to start the bottom of the fifth, just the third hit of the game for Minnesota to that point. He went on to retire the next three batters to get through the inning.

He faltered a bit in the bottom of the sixth, allowing a leadoff double followed by a single, with a run coming across on an error on that play. He once again rebounded to finish that frame, then put up a 1-2-3 seventh to finish his day off, notching another quality start and a win. His final line: 7.0 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 2 K, 1 HR, 97 P.

Houston keeps their foot on the gas

While Valdez's outing was a highlight of its own, Houston's offense was the story of the day. They put their foot down on the pedal all day and did not let up, starting in the top of the first when Jose Altuve turned the first pitch of the game around for a single, later scoring on a sac fly by Alex Bregman to put the Astros in front 1-0.

After two scoreless innings, they got right back on the scoreboard in the fourth with a two-run homer by Kyle Tucker, then kept pouring it on with two runs in the fifth on a sac fly by Yuli Gurriel and an error, making it 5-0 at the time. The runs kept coming in the top of the sixth, with a two-RBI double by Michael Brantley, who would score later on a two-run bomb by Yordan Alvarez. Then, in the top of the seventh, Brantley struck again to push it to double-digits with a two-RBI single to make it 11-2 and give Brantley 4 RBI on the afternoon.

With Houston swapping out starters with the hefty lead, even their pinch-hitters were getting involved, with Chas McCormick leading the top of the eighth off with a solo shot to make it a ten-run game. They then loaded the bases with no outs, setting up a sac fly for Myles Straw to make it 13-2.

Astros take the series

In the bottom of the eighth, Ralph Garza Jr. came in as the first reliever out of the bullpen for Houston. He recorded two quick outs but then met Nelson Cruz, who lasered a solo homer to put it back at a ten-run game before finishing the frame. Houston put their twentieth hit on the board in the top of the ninth, their highest total this season, en route to another scoring inning with a sac fly by Robel Garcia to make it 14-3. Garza came in for his second inning of work to wrap things up in the bottom of the ninth, giving the Astros a successful end to this series and road trip.

Up Next: Houston will travel home before an off day on Monday to rest before 20 days of consecutive games. They'll kick off a six-game homestand on Tuesday, welcoming in the Rangers for two starting at 7:10 PM Central. Lance McCullers Jr. (3-1, 2.96 ERA) will make his return from the IL for the Astros, though Jake Odorizzi will "piggy-back" him, and Kyle Gibson (4-0, 2.13 ERA) will take the mound for Texas.

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