Astros' losing streak extended to five games

Astros daily report presented by APG&E: 3 hits from the 10-6 loss

Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Riding a four-game losing streak into New York, the Astros were hoping to snap out of their funk and have a more typical game hopefully ending in a win. That would be a tall task against the strong Yankees in the first of four games over this weekend. Here's a recap:

Final Score: Yankees 10, Astros 6.

Record: 48-28, first in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Nestor Cortes Jr. (2-0, 4.09 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Framber Valdez (3-3, 3.61 ERA).

1) Framber fumbles the fourth

After looking sharp through the first three innings, Framber Valdez struggled in the bottom of the fourth, allowing a solo home run to start the inning, putting the next two on base, then allowing a three-run homer to blow the game open. He'd get just one out into the frame before A.J. Hinch made the call to the bullpen. Valdez's final line: 3.1 IP, 4 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 2 HR.

The reason he'd end up with five earned runs was the result of Chris Devenski coming out in relief and allowing a two-run home run, one of those belonging to Valdez. That gave New York a 6-0 lead, and after a brief rain delay, Devenski would finish the inning.

2) Astros get some runs of their own

Houston was able to trim the six-run lead at the time to four runs on back-to-back solo home runs by Jake Marisnick and Alex Bregman to make it a 6-2 game in the top of the fifth. After New York added two runs to put their lead back at six, Yordan Alvarez delivered a solo home run to trim the lead again to 8-3 in the top of the sixth.

They would threaten to trim the lead further later in the game, but would come up short on an RBI-single from Josh Reddick to make it 10-4, then two runs in the top of the ninth, one on Marisnick's second home run of the night to make it 10-5 then an RBI-double by Alvarez to make it 10-6.

3) Long bullpen night

Josh James was next out of the bullpen for the fifth inning with Houston hoping he could provide a lengthy appearance to save some of the other relievers from having to get extended in the first game of the series. Instead, James would struggle to complete just one inning, allowing a two-RBI double to make it an 8-2 Yankees lead.

Hector Rondon pitched the bottom of the sixth, striking out the side in order. Rogelio Armenteros was next out of the bullpen but would make a mistake to newly acquired Edwin Encarnacion who blasted a two-run home run to make it a 10-3 game. Armenteros would get through that inning and also work around loading the bases in the bottom of the eighth to complete that inning as well.

Up Next: The weekend series will continue tomorrow with first pitch of the second of four games at 6:05 PM. The expected pitching matchup is Brad Peacock (6-4, 3.67 ERA) for the Astros going against James Paxton (4-3, 3.93 ERA) for the Yankees.

The Astros daily report is presented by APG&E.

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Altuve's homer starting the scoring for Houston on Friday night. Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
After a solid showing to take the three of the four-game series in Arlington against the Rangers to start the week, the Astros returned home for three against the Diamondbacks in a weekend series. They would have a slow start to the opener but would ultimately come away victorious.

Final Score (10 innings): Astros 4, Diamondbacks 3

Astros' Record: 87-60, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Ryne Stanek (3-4)

Losing Pitcher: Tyler Clippard (1-1)

Bielak makes the impromptu start

With Luis Garcia having to move his start ahead by a day on Thursday instead of Friday with Framber Valdez's finger cut, Brandon Bielak made a start for Houston in the opener against Arizona. He didn't go as deep as he probably would have wanted and certainly ventured out of his comfort zone with traffic on the bases.

He loaded the bases in the top of the first, allowing a single and two walks, but was able to strand all three to keep it a scoreless game. He rebounded with a 1-2-3 second, but he dealt with a threat again in the third as back-to-back singles pressured him to start the inning. He would get back-to-back strikeouts, but that's as far as he would go as Houston moved on to Blake Taylor. Taylor got the final out of the third on one pitch, then erased a two-out double in the top of the fourth.

Altuve breaks up the no-no with a go-ahead homer

Brooks Raley took over in the top of the fifth, but in his three batters, he faced allowed a single while getting two outs before Cristian Javier took over to end the frame. Javier allowed the first run of the game in the top of the sixth, a leadoff solo homer to Kole Calhoun to put the Diamondbacks in front 1-0 before he finished the inning.

Madison Bumgarner didn't allow a single hit to the Astros through the first five and two-thirds innings. He allowed a one-out walk in the bottom of the sixth, which proved costly as Jose Altuve would get the first knock of the game for Houston, a two-run go-ahead homer. Phil Maton was the next reliever for the Astros in the top of the seventh, maintaining the new one-run lead by erasing a leadoff single.

Astros get the win in extras

The Diamondbacks tied it up in the top of the eighth against Kendall Graveman, getting a leadoff single followed by a walk, then later an RBI single to knot things up 2-2. Houston stranded a runner in the bottom of the eighth, then brought in Ryan Pressly, who tossed a 1-2-3 top of the ninth to keep the game tied.

Despite getting the winning run in scoring position with a leadoff ground-rule double by Jason Castro to start the bottom of the ninth, they would strand it as the game went to extras. Arizona scored their free runner in the top of the tenth, getting a sac fly to move it to third then going in front on an RBI single.

The Astros matched that and more in the bottom of the inning, moving their runner to third on a lineout to start the frame, followed by an intentional walk to Yordan Alvarez. Jake Meyers tied the game with an RBI single, then after another walk to load the bases, Chas McCormick was hit by a pitch to bring in the winning run, moving the Astros closer to clinching their playoff berth.

Up Next: The middle game of this three-game set will have a start time of 6:10 PM Central on Saturday. Tyler Gilbert (2-2, 3.15 ERA) is expected to make a start for Arizona, while Lance McCullers Jr. (12-4, 3.12 ERA) will be on the mound for Houston.

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