Houston has lost back-to-back games

Astros drop back-and-forth game to Royals to open four-game series

Astros' Jake Odorizzi
Jake Odorizzi couldn't hold down the Royals in Monday's opener. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images.

Jake Odorizzi couldn't hold down the Royals in Monday's opener.

With their four-game winning streak snapped in the finale against the Angels on Sunday, the Astros moved on to their next series, a four-game set against the Royals starting Monday in Kansas City. Instead of creating a new winning streak, they'd drop the back-and-forth opener to make it a two-game losing streak.

Final Score: Royal 7, Astros 6

Astros' Record: 70-48, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Scott Barlow (5-3)

Losing Pitcher: Yimi Garcia (3-8)

Trading blows early

Houston started the game by shifting the momentum in their favor, grabbing a 1-0 lead in the top of the first after a leadoff double by Jose Altuve set up a two-out RBI single by Yordan Alvarez. That started a back-and-forth battle, though, with the Royals responding with a two-run go-ahead bottom of the second, getting four hits including a one-out RBI double and two-out RBI single to go ahead 2-1 on Jake Odorizzi.

They tagged Odorizzi with another run in the third, taking advantage of back-to-back walks to start the inning with a one-out RBI single to extend their lead to 3-1. While Houston's starter settled back in, his offense helped get him off of the hook in the top of the fifth. Aledmyz Diaz started the frame with a solo homer, then with two outs, Michael Brantley delivered an RBI single to knot it up 3-3.

Odorizzi's night comes to a rough end

After a scoreless bottom of the fifth by Odorizzi, Carlos Correa put the Astros back in front with a 430-foot go-ahead solo homer to lead off the top of the sixth. Kansas City answered to keep the slugfest going, though, getting a one-out solo shot in the bottom of the inning to end Odorizzi's night with a no-decision. His final line: 5.1 IP, 8 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 2 K, 1 HR, 89 P.

Astros come up short and drop the opener

The first reliever out of the Astros' bullpen was Phil Maton, who finished the sixth for Odorizzi by retiring the two batters he faced. Ryne Stanek took over in the bottom of the seventh, but after watching a leadoff walk move to third on two stolen bases, he allowed a go-ahead RBI single to put the Royals back in front 5-4. Once again, things got tied up as a pinch-hitting Taylor Jones in the top of the eighth reached on a one-out double, then scored on a two-out RBI single by Aledmys Diaz, who would get caught between first and second to end the inning.

Yimi Garcia was the next reliever for Houston, but after two outs, he gave up three straight hits, the third a two-RBI single by Salvador Perez to put the Royals back on top 7-5. Despite Jason Castro getting the Astros within a run with a solo home run with one out in the top of the ninth, that's as close as they'd come as Kansas City would close things out to take the opener.

Up Next: The second of this four-game set will be another 7:10 PM Central start on Tuesday. Framber Valdez (8-3, 3.09 ERA) will try to get the win for the Astros, while the Royals are expected to send Daniel Lynch (2-3, 5.97 ERA) to the mound.

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Braves beat Houston in extra innings, 5-4. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images.

Marcell Ozuna hit his major league-leading eighth homer and Orlando Arcia’s RBI single in the 10th inning lifted the Atlanta Braves to a 5-4 win over the Houston Astros on Wednesday.

It completes a three-game sweep of the struggling Astros and is Atlanta’s fourth straight victory.

The Braves scored two runs in the eighth inning to tie it at 4-4. Michael Harris II started the 10th as the automatic runner on second and there was one out in the inning when Seth Martinez (1-1) intentionally walked Matt Olson.

Ozuna lined out to right field to send Harris to third base. Arcia then singled on a ground ball to left field to score Harris and put the Braves on top.

Pinch-runner Jake Meyers was on second when Kyle Tucker walked with no outs in the 10th. Meyers moved to third on a fly out by Yainer Diaz but Jeremy Peña grounded into a double play to end it.

A.J. Minter (3-1) got the last two outs of the ninth for the win and Raisel Iglesias earned his fifth save.

Reigning NL MVP Ronald Acuña Jr. added his first homer of the season to help the Braves to the victory. Ozuna also leads the majors with 23 RBIs and he extended his hitting streak to 16 games, which ties his career best and is the longest active streak in the majors.

Yordan Alvarez and Mauricio Dubón both homered for the Astros, who fell to 6-14 and are last in the AL West.

There was one out in the first when Alvarez connected on his homer to the seats in left field to put Houston up 1-0.

Ozuna opened the second with his 432-foot shot to left field, which bounced off the wall and tied the game.

Acuña put the Braves up 2-1 when he sent the first pitch of the fifth inning to straightaway center field.

The Astros tied it on an RBI single by Alex Bregman in the fifth and Kyle Tucker’s RBI double came next to put the Astros up 3-2.

Dubón hit his first home run of the year off Jesse Chavez to start Houston’s sixth and push the lead to 4-2.

Harris singled to start the seventh before a ground-rule double by Austin Riley. Olson reached, and Harris scored on a fielding error by first baseman José Abreu when he couldn’t grab a routine ground ball.

There was one out in the inning when Riley scored on a sacrifice fly by Arcia to tie it at 4-all.

Houston starter J.P. France allowed four hits and two runs in five innings.

Max Fried gave up seven hits and three runs in five innings.


Braves: Atlanta is off Thursday before opening a series against Texas on Friday night with LHP Chris Sale (1-1, 4.58 ERA) on the mound.

Astros: Houston is also off Thursday before ace Justin Verlander will make his season debut Friday night against Washington. The three-time Cy Young Award winner opened the season on the injured list with inflammation in his right shoulder.

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