Astros take series from Royals in a blowout

Astros daily report presented by APG&E: 3 hits from the 9-0 win

Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

The Astros looked to put the disaster of Tuesday night behind them and get the series win with a victory on Wednesday night against the Royals. Here are some quick facts and three hits from the game:

Final Score: Astros 9, Royals 0

Record: 22-15, first in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Brad Peacock (3-2, 4.30 ERA)

Losing pitcher: Jorge Lopez (0-4, 6.07 ERA)

1) Offense strikes back

The Astros enacted their revenge on the Royals from the night before with a big offensive night of their own. It started with Houston's first batter of the night as George Springer led off the bottom of the first with a solo home run. They struck again in the third, putting together a five-run inning on a couple of sac flies from Alex Bregman and Aledmys Diaz, a solo home run from Carlos Correa, and a two-run home run by Michael Brantley. Brantley made it back-to-back innings and at-bats with a home run, coming up big again in the fourth with a solo home run to extend the lead to 7-0.

They were at it again in the bottom of the fifth, getting an RBI groundout from Max Stassi then sacrifice fly from Springer to extend the lead to 9-0.

2) Filthy Peacock

Peacock had his slider working and in control in this start, allowing just two baserunners through the first four innings. He got into some trouble in the top of the fifth, loading the bases with one out, but would get out of it with back-to-back strikeouts to end the inning. He bounced back from that with two more dominant innings, completing seven shutout frames. Peacock's final line: 7 innings pitched, 0 runs, 3 hits, 1 walk, and a career-high 12 strikeouts.

3) James shuts it down

With Peacock's night done after seven fantastic innings, Josh James took over in the eighth and worked around a leadoff walk to keep the shutout going into the ninth. In the ninth, he hit a batter but still completed the shutout with another scoreless inning, giving him two innings of work with a walk, hit batter, and five strikeouts.

Up Next: The Astros will stay here in Houston with a four-game series against the rival Rangers starting tomorrow night. First pitch is at 7:10 PM and will feature Wade Miley (2-2, 3.20 ERA) for Houston on the mound opposite of Mike Minor (3-2, 2.40 ERA) for the Rangers.

The Astros daily report is presented by APG&E.

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Texans fall to Browns. Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images.

The Houston Texans kept it closer than the experts thought they would, but couldn't pull out a victory. Here are 11 observations from the loss in Cleveland to the Browns.

1. The game looks totally different if Texans quarterback Tyrod Taylor finishes the game. Taylor left at halftime with a hamstring injury. He was playing exceptionally well against his former team. Taylor is not expected to play Thursday according to NFL Network.

2. Davis Mills had a rocky NFL debut which was to be expected. Mills looked to have the wrong elements of a few plays. He also couldn't hit backup wideout Andre Roberts over the middle and threw an interception. It was a fine performance considering what Mills showed he could do in the preseason.

3. Mills didn't work with a full load of offensive weapons in the second half. Rookie wideout Nico Collins didn't return to the game after his lone catch and big run early in the game. Veteran slot receiver Danny Amendola left the game with an injury. Tight end Anthony Auclair left with an eye injury. The Texans entered the game without wide receiver Anthony Miller who was inactive.

4. Brandin Cooks is a monster through two games. He is the most dangerous skill position player on the team, and defenses still have trouble covering him and staying with him. Cooks turned in yet another impressive day for this team and hauled in a Davis Mills touchdown pass.

5. The Browns did a solid job against the ground game of the Texans. Mark Ingram averaged under three yards per carry and Tyrod Taylor was the only rusher to have a big play on the ground. This led to a fair number of third-and-long situations which the Texans usually had trouble converting.

6. Justin Reid was set to increase his payday on his next contract with his early play. Reid forced a fumble and had an interception in the first half. Unfortunately, Reid would leave the game multiple times with injuries. The knock on Reid has always been his health.

7. The Texans were worn down by the Browns rushing attack all day. Once Cleveland committed to the run they saw the success of their work culminating in a 26-yard scamper by Nick Chubb for a touchdown. The Browns didn't run as much as I excepted them to run early.

8. Tim Kelly had another nice day calling plays. Kelly remains creative in finding ways to get the ball out of Taylor's hands quickly as well as manufacturing matchups where the Texans can win and pick up yards. He even got creative to get Davis Mills a passing touchdown late in the game. Kelly has been very impressive through two games.

9. Andre Roberts was inexcusably bad today. The Texans defense held on the opening drive and his muffed punt eliminated the momentum from the defensive stand. He also had poor returns on kickoffs. His lone job is to be a solid returner, and he failed at that on Sunday.

10. David Culley had a head-scratching decision foregoing an offsides call on a third down. The head coach opted for the result of the third down, and a punt on fourth down, instead of another third down. He did not explain himself well postgame on the decision either.

11. The Texans hung tough and should feel solid about where they could have been without the injury to their quarterback. With no Taylor in the short week, it will not be easy to beat the Panthers who upset the Saints on Sunday.

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