Astros get the walk-off win in extra innings

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

Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Back at home after a 6-1 road trip including the 14th inning win over the Mariners on Thursday, the Astros looked to open a homestand on a good note with a victory in the first of three games against the struggling Orioles. Here's how Friday night's game went:

Final Score (11 innings): Astros 4, Orioles 3.

Record: 44-21, first in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Cionel Perez (1-0, 0.00 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Branden Kline (1-3, 5.89 ERA).

1) Bad start, great finish for Cole 

Gerrit Cole started his night with a near-disastrous first inning, allowing Baltimore to score two quick runs in an inning with an error hit batter, and two hits which gave the Orioles an immediate 2-0 lead. Cole would get dinged again in the third after a solo home run extended the deficit to 3-0.

Cole would lock in and dominate after that, though, allowing just one hit the rest of his night, a night where he would throw 113 pitches over seven innings and hit a season-high in strikeouts. His final line: 7 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 14K.

2) Reddick and Kemp tie it in the fifth, Chirinos walks it off in the eleventh

After a slow offensive start and watching the Orioles build a 3-0 lead, Josh Reddick finally broke through in the fifth inning with a leadoff solo home run to trim the lead to 3-1. One out later, Tyler White worked a walk before Tony Kemp connected and launched a two-run bomb into the upper deck in right-field to tie the game at 3-3.

After missing their chance to walk it off in the bottom of the ninth and tenth, Houston would eventually get the walk-off in the bottom of the eleventh on an RBI from Robinson Chirinos.

3) Cionel Perez supports a fatigued bullpen 

After logging a lot of innings on the recent road trip, including the 14-inning game in Seattle on Thursday, the bullpen looked to keep Baltimore off the board and give Houston's offense a chance to go-ahead. Hector Rondon took over for Gerrit Cole in the eighth and worked around a two-out single for a scoreless inning.

Cionel Perez, who was called up after Brady Rodgers was optioned down to AAA, was called on for the ninth inning and was able to retire the Orioles in order. After the offense came up empty in the bottom half of the inning, Perez returned for the top of the tenth and would make it back-to-back 1-2-3 innings. He'd return for another inning in the eleventh making it nine batters sat down in a row and setting up the Astros for their eventual walk-off.

Up Next: Houston and Baltimore will continue this series tomorrow with a Saturday afternoon game starting at 3:10 PM. With Corbin Martin's move back to AAA, Framber Valdez (2-2, 3.12 ERA) will get at least one start in the rotation as Houston tries to fill the starter spot on the roster originally vacated by Collin McHugh. He'll go up against Andrew Cashner (6-2, 5.04 ERA) for the Orioles.

The Astros daily report is presented by APG&E.

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Houston is back in the win column

McCullers Jr. spins a gem as Astros get a much-needed win over Giants

Photo by Tim Bradbury/Getty Images

After getting swept by the A's in Oakland to end a road trip with a five-game losing streak, the Astros returned to Houston to try and get back on track. To do so, they'd need a win against the Giants on Monday night. Here is a quick recap of the series opener:

Final Score: Astros 6, Giants 4.

Record: 7-9, second in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Lance McCullers Jr. (2-1, 6.10 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Logan Webb (1-1, 2.81 ERA).

Houston builds up an early lead

The early goings of Monday's game went very similar to the last time Lance McCullers Jr. took the mound. He would have a terrific first three innings while his offense gave him an early lead. The first run came in the bottom of the second, with Yuli Gurriel reaching base on a one-out double, moving to third on a wild pitch, then scoring on an RBI-single by Carlos Correa.

Correa would take part in a four-run inning in the third, as Houston would score two on a two-RBI ground-rule double by Michael Brantley, another on an error, then Correa's second RBI of the night, a groundout to bring in a run and make it 5-0. Unlike the last start in Arizona, where the roof opened and McCullers Jr. fell apart in the fourth, he was able to make quick work of his opponent for a 1-2-3 frame. As he kept recording scoreless innings, Martin Maldonado added another run to the lead with a one-out solo home run in the bottom of the sixth, making it 6-0.

McCullers Jr. takes a no-hitter into the seventh

While the Astros were building their lead, McCullers Jr. was spinning a gem on the mound. He allowed just one baserunner through the first six innings, which came on a hit-by-pitch. He entered the seventh with a no-hitter in progress, but the Giants would get their first hit of the night to end the no-hit bid.

Regardless, the start was precisely what McCullers Jr. needed to restore his confidence after the disastrous inning he had in his last appearance. He would go on to complete the seventh inning before Houston would go to the bullpen with the large lead in the eighth. His final line: 7.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K 0 HR, 1 HPB.

Houston gets back in the win column despite more struggles by Josh James

Josh James entered out of the bullpen for the top of the eighth but allowed the first run of the night for San Francisco via a solo home run with one out to make it 6-1. He would complete the inning and then return for the top of the ninth. He would have another rocky inning, issuing a leadoff walk before a single and double would make it a four-run game at 6-2, still with no outs in the inning and runners on second and third, prompting another call to the bullpen.

Dusty Baker would bring in his current closer, Ryan Pressly, to try and finish the game, now in a save situation. Pressly would retire the first two batters he faced before allowing a two-RBI single to make it 6-4, but would eventually get the final out to get Houston the much-needed win. With the victory, the Astros moved back into second place in the AL West standings.

Up Next: The middle game of this three-game set will start Tuesday at 8:10 PM Central. The Giants, working with a fluid rotation, have not yet fully decided on their starter, while the Astros will get another start from Brandon Bielak (2-0, 0.87 ERA) who will look to repeat the success of his five-inning, no-run start in Arizona last week.

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