Astros lock up the series win against the Rangers

Astros daily report presented by APG&E: 3 hits from the 6-1 win

Astros daily report presented by APG&E: 3 hits from the 6-1 win
Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

After taking the opener on Friday night, the Astros had their sights on locking up the series with a win over the Rangers on Saturday. Here is a recap of the middle game of the three-game set:

Final Score: Astros 6, Rangers 1.

Record: 63-37, first in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Jose Urquidy (1-0, 5.54 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Ariel Jurado (5-6, 4.92 ERA).

1) Gurriel cannot be stopped

It was Houston once again starting the scoring for the night, this time in the bottom of the third. Myles Straw led the inning off with a double, then came around to score on another double by George Springer. Springer would then also score no a one-out double by Michael Brantley, putting the Astros up 2-0.

The Astros quickly extended their lead in the fifth. It started with back-to-back two-out singles by Michael Brantley and Yordan Alvarez, bringing Yuli Gurriel to the plate. Gurriel continued his recent red-hot streak, drilling a home run to make it a 5-1 lead for Houston. The home run was Gurriel's thirteenth in his last twenty-one games, and the three runs from it brought his total in that same span of games to twenty-eight.

2) Brilliant start for Urquidy

Jose Urquidy received another chance to start on Saturday night while the Astros continue to try to figure out the fourth and fifth spots of the rotation. He took complete advantage of the opportunity, giving his team exactly what they needed with an extended outing.

Urquidy did not allow a hit until the fourth inning, though it would be a costly one in a solo home run which trimmed Houston's lead to 2-1 at the time. He quickly put that behind him, settling right back in and only allowing one other hit over the rest of his seven innings of work.

Along the way he also racked up nine strikeouts while issuing zero walks, further solidifying it as his best start so far in the big leagues. Urquidy's final line: 7 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 9 K, 1 HR.

3) Holding on to take the series

With Urquidy giving Houston seven innings, that meant only two innings of work for the bullpen. Chris Devenski took over for the top of the eighth and struck out the side on fourteen pitches. Hector Rondon was given the ninth with the five-run lead, looking to put his most recent outing behind him. He did so, getting a 1-2-3 inning to finish off the victory.

The win not only secured a win in this series but a win in the season series with the Astros taking their tenth of the nineteen-game series.

Up Next: The Astros and Rangers will conclude this series with the first pitch of the finale scheduled for 1:10 PM Sunday. Texas will have the best starter of their rotation on the mound in Lance Lynn (12-5, 3.87 ERA) while Houston will hope to get a solid start out of Rogelio Armenteros (0-0, 2.00 ERA) to get a weekend sweep.

The Astros daily report is presented by APG&E.

Most Popular

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome

Listen Live

ESPN Houston 97.5 FM
The Astros rotation looks like a strength moving forward. Composite Getty Image.

The Houston Astros are coming off a much-needed series win over the White Sox, but have a quick turnaround as they host the Orioles on Friday night at Minute Maid Park.

The 'Stros dropped the first game of the series with Framber Valdez on the mound, but were able to rebound with Hunter Brown and Spencer Arrighetti starting the final two games.

Brown was brilliant once again, and Arrighetti bounced back after a disastrous start against the Tigers over the weekend. Despite all the injures to the Astros staff this season, their young pitchers are stepping up when they need them the most.

Brown has six consecutive quality starts and is beginning to show signs that he can be the top of the rotation pitcher the club always hoped he could develop into.

Arrighetti has stepped in and shown that he belongs in the big leagues, and has provided innings Houston desperately requires with so many pitchers on the injured list.

Speaking of which, with Justin Verlander on the IL, Double A prospect Jake Bloss will make the start for Houston on Friday night. Bloss has quickly progressed through the farm system, having been drafted just a year ago.

We'll see how he performs in his MLB debut, but the club seems to have a lot of quality pitching options moving forward, especially with Luis Garcia and Lance McCullers scheduled to return in late July and early August respectively.

And as we look at the Astros rotation moving forward, perhaps they will go back to a six-man rotation during certain stretches in the second half of the season.

Which could prove to be vital to the team's success. As good as Ronel Blanco has been, he's never pitched as many innings as he'll be asked to pitch this year. Same goes for Arrighetti. And let's face it, sending Verlander out to pitch on four days rest consistently at 41 years old doesn't sound like a wise decision. He's already been on the IL twice this year.

While some see Garcia and McCullers as wild cards to help the team this season, Astros GM Dana Brown doesn't see it that way. He told the Astros flagship station this week that he's counting on those guys to make big contributions when they return. And he's counting on their postseason experience should they get there.

Keep in mind, Garcia has a 3.61 career ERA and has been durable outside the Tommy John surgery. And McCullers has always been good, it's just the health that causes concern.

Garcia is also an example of how a player can skip Double A and Triple A and have success right away in the big leagues. Hopefully, Bloss can follow in his footsteps, since he's bypassing Triple A to make his first start.

So what's the short and long-term outlook for the Astros rotation? And should we expect Verlander to return in 2025?

Be sure to watch the video above as we address those questions and much more!

SportsMap Emails
Are Awesome