Houston is now 10-10
Astros get back to .500 and secure series with win over Mariners
After unloading on Seattle in the lopsided 11-1 win on Friday, the Astros tried to lock up the series and continue their success at the plate with a victory on Saturday. Here is a quick recap of the middle game of the three-game set:
Final Score: Astros 2, Mariners 1.
Record: 10-10, second in the AL West.
Winning pitcher: Cristian Javier (2-1, 2.91 ERA).
Losing pitcher: Nick Margevicius (0-1, 3.14 ERA).
Houston scores early as Javier goes six scoreless
After combining for ten runs in the first inning on Friday, both teams headed to the second still scoreless on Saturday, thanks in part by Cristian Javier striking out the side in order in the top of the inning. The middle of Houston's order went to work in the bottom of the second, getting a runner in scoring position via a Yordan Alvarez single who then moved to third on a double by Yuli Gurriel. Jose Altuve, who was moved down to seventh in the lineup, took advantage of the RBI opportunity with a groundout to put the Astros in front 1-0.
Gurriel would make another impact in the bottom of the fourth, hitting a two-out solo home run to straightaway center to double the lead, 2-0. That gave Javier a two-run cushion, and he hadn't allowed a hit yet in the game. Seattle would change that in the top of the fifth, getting their first hit and threatening to score, but Javier was able to work out of a jam to keep the Mariners off the board. He would last one more frame, getting the Mariners to go down 1-2-3 in the sixth. His final line: 6.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 5 K, 0 HR.
Bullpen holds on for the win
Josh James entered to take over for Javier in the top of the seventh. Unlike his other appearances this year, James would get through this one without allowing any runs. Brooks Raley was next out of the bullpen for the top of the eighth, and he would allow the first run of the night for the Mariners on a two-out solo home run to cut the lead in half at 2-1.
After threatening to add some insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth, Seattle would hold the Astros off, keeping it a one-run game going to the ninth. Ryan Pressly would enter to try and notch another save, and he would do so with a quick 1-2-3 inning. The victory put Houston back at .500 on the year and made it three straight wins.
Up Next: The finale of this series between the Astros and Mariners will get underway at 1:10 PM Central on Sunday. Lance McCullers Jr. (2-1, 6.10 ERA) will be on the mound for Houston after a gem in his last start, while Justus Sheffield (1-2, 5.27 ERA) will start for Seattle.