Houston can't complete the sweep

Astros drop finale to Mariners after rough bullpen outing

Houston's offense couldn't outpace the bullpen struggles in Wednesday's finale against the Mariners. Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

After the come-from-behind walk-off win in extras to lock up the series victory on Tuesday, the Astros sought a series sweep with a win on Wednesday afternoon to finish this series against Seattle. They would again come up short of a sweep, with their bullpen allowing late runs to put Seattle on top.

Final Score: Mariners 8, Astros 5

Astros' Record: 81-58, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Diego Castillo (3-5)

Losing Pitcher: Ryan Pressly (5-2)

Urquidy lasts only three frames

In this start, things did not go well for Jose Urquidy, beginning with a two-run first inning where he would load the bases with three one-out singles and then allowed a two-RBI double to Abraham Toro to put the Mariners in front 2-0. He would get through the next two innings without any more damage, but with his less-than-normal stuff and having already reached 70 pitches, Houston would move to their bullpen in the fourth. Urquidy's final line: 3.0 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 2 K, 70 P.

Houston jumps in front

Urquidy would at least leave with his team in front, thanks to a three-run second by his offense. After a leadoff single by Yordan Alvarez, Kyle Tucker drove him in with a one-out RBI double to make it a one-run game. Two batters later, Marwin Gonzalez, who recently rejoined his old team, launched a go-ahead two-run homer to put the Astros in front 3-2.

The one-run score stayed that way until the bottom of the fifth, when Jose Altuve would add another run on a leadoff solo homer, making it 4-2. They had the chance for more that inning, loading the bases with two outs, but would strand all three runners. After Urquidy made his early exit, Christian Javier entered to eat up some innings, and he would, getting through the fourth, fifth, and pitched into the sixth. He would get one out while allowing two on base, one walk and one single, before being lifted in favor of Brooks Raley, who finished the frame and got the first batter out of the seventh.

Astros can't complete the sweep

After Raley, Yimi Garcia entered to try and finish the inning. Instead, he allowed a double and a single while getting one out, putting two on base as they moved on to Phil Maton. Maton would watch both inherited runners score, allowing a two-RBI double to tie the game 4-4. Still tied in the top of the eighth, Kendall Graveman came on and was able to post a scoreless inning, erasing a single and a walk during the inning.

Ryan Pressly entered to keep the stalemate going in the top of the ninth. He would get two strikeouts, but he allowed a single and a walk between them, setting up a go-ahead two-RBI single to blow the save. Blake Taylor entered to finish the inning, but not before allowing a two-run homer to make it an 8-4 game. Despite a leadoff solo homer by pinch-hitting Alex Bregman, the Astros come no closer, allowing the Mariners to avoid the sweep and salvage a game in the series.

Up Next: The Astros will have a day off on Thursday before continuing this homestand with the opener of a three-game series with the Angels Friday at 7:10 PM Central. Framber Valdez (9-5, 3.08 ERA) will be on the mound for Houston, while Los Angeles has not yet decided their starter.

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