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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Yordan Alvarez's homer in Wednesday's game gave him 100 RBI on the season. Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images

Winners of three straight, six of their last seven, and eight of their last ten, the Astros had the chance to move yet another game closer to clinching their playoff spot if they could secure the series with a win against the Angels on Wednesday. Even though it looked as though they were headed towards a loss in extra innings, they would ultimately come out ahead.

Final Score (12 innings): Astros 9, Angels 5

Astros' Record: 91-61, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Yimi Garcia (4-9)

Losing Pitcher: Sam Selman (0-1)

Garcia goes six shutout innings

Although he didn't have swing-and-miss dominance in this start, Luis Garcia could still capitalize on a struggling Angels offense and post a shutout quality start against them. He allowed three walks and three hits throughout his outing but stranded all of them while getting outs on balls in play. His final line: 6.0 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 1 K, 79 P.

Alvarez reaches 100 RBI as Houston's offense keeps rolling

That performance had Garcia in line for the win, as two homers handed him a 3-0 advantage which he held. Houston once again used early offense to take a first-inning lead, as a leadoff walk by Jose Altuve turned into a monster 456-foot by Yordan Alvarez, pushing him to 100 RBI on the season. The score held at 2-0 until the top of the fifth, when Jason Castro led that frame off with a solo homer to extend the lead to three runs.

Extras in Anaheim

Phil Maton was first out of Houston's bullpen in the bottom of the seventh, but a single, double, and walk loaded the bases with no outs to put him in a jam. A lineout kept the runners put for the first out, but a single and a walk would make it a one-run game and left the bases loaded as Maton would get pulled.

Kendall Graveman entered to try and stop the bleeding, but after a force out at home to put that within reach, Jack Mayfield came through for Los Angeles with a go-ahead three-run double, giving the Angels their first lead of the series at 5-3. In the top of the eighth, a walk by Alex Bregman brought Alvarez back to the plate, and he would nearly miss a game-tying homer and instead got an RBI-single to make it 5-4.

Alvarez would still come in to tie the game, hustling home from second on an RBI single by Yuli Gurriel to knot things up 5-5. Brooks Raley was Houston's next reliever, and he sat down LA in order with two strikeouts. Still tied in the bottom of the ninth, Ryan Pressly came in to force extras, and despite being shadowed by the winning run on the bases after a leadoff single, retired the next three batters to send the game to the tenth.

Astros keep battling and take it in the twelfth

Jake Meyers took second base as Houston's free runner in the top of the tenth, but he would go nowhere as the Astros went down in order, giving the Angels another chance at a walk-off. Instead of giving Shohei Ohtani a free pass immediately, Houston would let Blake Taylor throw two balls to him before giving him the intentional walk.

Taylor then gave up a single to load the bases with no outs, and after getting a force out at home for the first out, Yimi Garcia would replace him. Thanks to a great play by Chas McCormick, giving him multiple in the game, the Astros would live to see another inning as he would make a great catch in right field and then throw out Ohtani at home.

In the top of the eleventh, a sac fly by Yuli Gurriel moved Aledmys Diaz to third, but that's as close as Houston would come, leaving them stuck at five runs. After Garcia retired three more batters in the bottom of the eleventh, the game moved to the twelfth, where Houston would get back in front on an RBI single by Jake Meyers, then padded the new lead on a two-RBI double by Jose Altuve, who would also score on a sac fly by Alex Bregman, making it 9-5. Josh James came in and wrapped things up in the bottom half as Houston secured the series victory and reduced their magic number to two against Oakland and three against Seattle.

Up Next: The finale of this four-game series, and the last time these two teams will meet this year, will be an 8:38 PM Central start on Thursday. The expected pitching matchup is Alex Cobb (8-3, 3.59 ERA) for Los Angeles and Lance McCullers Jr. (12-4, 3.11 ERA) for Houston.

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