Astros secure series win against Seattle

Astros daily report presented by APG&E: 3 hits from the 2-1 win

Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Still gridlocked with the Yankees for the best record in the American League, and with two wins already in the books in the first games of this set with the Mariners, the Astros looked to lock up the series on Saturday night.

They had Justin Verlander, fresh of a no-hitter, on the mound to try and do so, and keep pace with New York and continue moving towards their magic number in the division. Here is a quick rundown of the game:

Final Score: Astros 2, Mariners 1.

Record: 93-50, first in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Justin Verlander (18-5, 2.52 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Austin Adams (1-2, 3.54 ERA).

1) Verlander continues to dominate

Justin Verlander kept moving along dominantly to start Saturday's game with Mariners, continuing his recent stretch of success including the no-hitter in his last start. He retired the first six batters he faced in order but would snap his hitless and scoreless streak in the third, though.

A leadoff single in the top of the third would come around to score on a one-out triple, putting Seattle in front 1-0, and giving Verlander his first earned run since his start on August 21st. He settled back in after that, though, throwing four more scoreless innings en route to one of his typical successful starts. His final line: 7 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K, 0 HR.

2) Houston ties in the sixth, goes ahead in the seventh

After being held scoreless through the first five innings, Alex Bregman finally gave Houston their first run against Yusei Kikuchi with a solo home run to lead off the sixth. With his 100th walk earlier in the night, and the home run giving him his 100th RBI on the year, Alex Bregman joined Mike Trout as the only other player in the majors with 100 runs, 100 walks, and 100 RBIs.

After tying the game in the inning prior, Houston took their first lead of the night in the bottom of the seventh. Kyle Tucker led the inning off by pinch-hitting and appeared to hit a home run after hitting a ball off of the left-field scoreboard that made it into the stands but instead was ruled a double and fan interference. He moved to third on a wild pitch, then scored on a sacrifice fly by Josh Reddick, making it a 2-1 Astros lead.

3) James and Harris finish it off

With Verlander's night over after seven one-run innings, it was up to Houston's bullpen to preserve the one-run lead that had him in line for the win. Josh James was out first to throw the top of the eighth and despite putting two runners on with one out, was able to get back-to-back strikeouts to end the inning.

With Roberto Osuna's usage high in recent days, Houston turned to Will Harris to notch the save in the ninth. He did so, retiring the Mariners in order, securing the series win.

Up Next: Houston and Seattle will conclude this four-game series on Sunday at 1:10 PM. Gerrit Cole (15-5, 2.81 ERA) will be on the mound for the Astros opposite of Felix Hernandez (1-5, 6.02 ERA) for the Mariners.

The Astros daily report is presented by APG&E.

Houston's magic number is down to 1

Astros daily report presented by APG&E: 3 hits from the 6-4 win

Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

After the mini-sweep of the Rangers concluding with win number 100 on the season which secured a playoff spot, the Astros turned their sights to clinching the division. With their magic number at 2, they could clinch on Friday with a win in the series opener against Los Angeles and an Oakland loss. Here is a recap of the first game of the weekend against the Angels:

Final Score: Astros 6, Angels 4.

Record: 101-53, first in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Zack Greinke (17-5, 3.05 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Jaime Barria (4-10, 6.43 ERA).

1) Starting with a bang

With a chance to clinch their division and continue to lead the battle for playoff home-field advantage, Houston came out swinging on Friday night. In the first inning, the Astros blasted three home runs with solo shots from Jose Altuve which led off the inning, and Alex Bregman as he tries to catch the sidelined Mike Trout for a possible MVP award.

Later in the inning, Carlos Correa took advantage of a runner on base with a home run of his own, a two-run bomb to extend the lead before Josh Reddick tacked on one more with an RBI-single to make it 5-0 after one.

2) Greinke struggles in the fourth but finishes five innings

Zack Greinke allowed just two hits through the first three innings: a single and a solo home run which at the time cut the lead to 5-1. Carlos Correa pushed the lead back to five runs with his second home run of the night in the bottom of the third.

Greinke would struggle in the top of the fourth, however, allowing five straight hits which would score three runs to cut Houston's lead to 6-4. He would recover and toss a 1-2-3 fifth, but that would be it for him in a five-inning start, as Houston passed the ball to their bullpen to throw the last four frames. His final line: 5 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 0 BB, 4 K, 1 HR.

3) Houston's bullpen dominant the rest of the way

Josh James was the first reliever out of Houston's bullpen to take over for Greinke in the top of the sixth and erased a two-out walk to complete a scoreless inning. Ryan Pressly, making his first appearance in a month after having surgery on his knee, returned dominantly with a 1-2-3 inning.

Will Harris did the same in the top of the eighth, holding the two-run lead going to the ninth. Roberto Osuna had the chance for another save in the top of the ninth and converted it to finish off the 6-4 win. That reduced the magic number to one, meaning the Astros are now a win or Oakland loss away from clinching the American League West. They are also just two wins away from matching last year's franchise number of 103.

Up Next: Game two of this three-game set with the Angles will be on Saturday at 6:10 PM. Wade Miley (14-5, 3.71 ERA) will get the start for Houston while Patrick Sandoval (0-3, 4.91 ERA) is expected to be on the mound for Los Angeles.

The Astros daily report is presented by APG&E.

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