Verlander throws a gem in Astros win

Astros daily report presented by APG&E: 2 hits from the 5-1 win

Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

After taking the first game of the series against the White Sox, the Astros had Justin Verlander on the mound Tuesday night to make it two in a row. Here are the quick results of the game and two hits:

Final Score: Astros 5, White Sox 1.

Record: 33-16, first in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Justin Verlander (8-1, 2.24 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Dylan Covey (0-3, 5.31 ERA).

1) Vintage Verlander

Justin Verlander was spectacular on Tuesday night, and in fact, took a no-hitter into the seventh inning. Over the first six innings, he allowed just a walk while striking out ten. The no-hit bid was broken in the top of the seventh on a solo home run, but that didn't stop Verlander from having an incredible night. He'd complete eight innings during which he allowed only the one hit and run while striking out 12. The win moved him to 8-1 on the season and lowered his ERA to 2.24. Hector Rondon took over for the ninth and threw a scoreless inning to wrap up the win.

2) Big fifth inning of offense

After both teams going scoreless through the first three innings, Yuli Gurriel finally got Houston on the board with a solo home run in the bottom of the fourth. The big offensive inning of the night, was the fifth, though, with the Astros putting up four runs on a wild pitch an RBI-single from Carlos Correa and a big two-RBI double from Michael Brantley.

Up Next: Game three of this four-game set will get underway with another 7:10 PM start on Wednesday night. Houston will send the league leader in strikeouts, Gerrit Cole (4-4, 3.56 ERA), to the mound to match up against Ivan Nova (2-4, 7.42 ERA) for Chicago.

The Astros daily report is presented by APG&E.

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Houston's bats have a hot night

Astros clobber Rangers to win series opener

Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

After dropping two of three in Seattle, the Astros entered the regular season's final series still waiting to clinch their playoff berth. Luckily their matchup favored them, with four games against the 19-37 Rangers, which they have done well against in recent years. Here are highlights from the opener:

Final Score: Astros 12, Rangers 4.

Record: 29-28, second in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Cristian Javier (5-2, 3.48 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Lance Lynn (6-3, 3.32 ERA).

Astros put up 10 on Lynn 

Houston had no trouble getting acquainted with the Rangers' new stadium, jumping out to an early lead in the top of the first inning. After a lengthy at-bat against Lance Lynn, Jose Altuve reached on a one-out single, then scored from first on a two-out RBI-triple by Alex Bregman. They'd double their lead in the next at-bat on an error, making it 2-0.

They extended that lead even more in the next inning, getting back-to-back singles to start the inning to set up a big three-run dinger by George Springer to straightaway center-field to make it 5-0. Bregman added two more RBI to his night in the top of the fifth, capitalizing on a leadoff single by Michael Brantley by hitting a two-run homer to make it a 7-0 lead. Altuve would push the total to double-digits in the top of the sixth, lifting a three-run home run of his own to make it a 10- lead.

Javier with a decent start, bullpen closes out the win

Meanwhile, Cristian Javier was doing well on the mound against the Rangers. He allowed just three baserunners through the first five innings, a double in the first, a hit batter in the second, and a single in the fifth. He would falter a bit in the bottom of the sixth, allowing a leadoff single then a two-run homer, then later in the inning a sac fly, making it 10-3 before Houston would turn to their bullpen. Javier's final line: 5.2 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 6 K, 1 HR, 95 TP.

Luis Garcia would get the final out of the sixth then returned for the bottom of the seventh, allowing a leadoff double that would score on a two-out RBI-double, making it a six-run game before Garcia finished the frame. Brooks Raley was the next reliever and notched two strikeouts in a 1-2-3 inning in the eighth.

Josh Reddick gave Houston two more insurance runs, joining the home run barrage with a two-run homer in the top of the inning to make it 12-4 going to the bottom half. Brandon Bielak was given a low-leverage opportunity to throw in the bottom of the ninth. He erased a two-out double for a scoreless inning to wrap up the lopsided win, lowering Houston's magic number to 1.

Up Next: The second game of this four-game set between Houston and Texas will start Friday at 7:05 PM Central at Globe Life Field. The pitching battle will be Kyle Cody (1-1, 1.53 ERA) for the Rangers and Jose Urquidy (1-1, 2.78 ERA) for the Astros.

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