Houston starts the second half strong

Astros exit All-Star break with dominant win over White Sox

Astros' Carlos Correa and Yuli Gurriel
Houston's offense came out of the All-Star break firing on all cylinders. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

Houston's offense came out of the All-Star break firing on all cylinders.

After an incredibly exciting end to the first half of the season with the magical walk-off win over the Yankees in Houston, the Astros started their first series out of the All-Star break in Chicago to face the White Sox. Despite falling behind a run in the first inning, the rest of the game was dominated by Houston as they would pick up the win.

Final Score: Astros 7, White Sox 1

Astros' Record: 56-36, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Lance McCullers Jr. (7-2)

Losing Pitcher: Dylan Cease (7-5)

McCullers Jr. moves past early trouble for a stellar start

Lance McCullers Jr.'s night started about as bad as it could have, with his first two pitches getting turned around for a leadoff triple and RBI double, giving the White Sox a 1-0 lead. He rebounded quickly and effectively, sitting down the next three batters to end that inning, then erased one walk each in the second and third. The walk in the third would be the last batter to reach base against him, as he would go on to retire thirteen in a row to get through seven innings of one-run baseball while notching a season-high ten strikeouts. His final line: 7.0 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 10 K, 94 P.

Houston takes and builds the lead

After the early run by Chicago, the Astros turned the offensive momentum to their favor in the top of the third. They loaded the bases with two outs, setting up Yuli Gurriel for a two-RBI double to go in front 2-1. Michael Brantley doubled the lead to two runs in the top of the fifth, sneaking a solo homer just inside the foul pole with two outs, making it 3-1.

They then blew it open in the top of the seventh against the White Sox bullpen, getting runners on second and third with two outs before Kyle Tucker would bring in a run on an infield single, his 50th RBI of the year. After Abraham Toro loaded the bases by being hit by a pitch, Myles Straw plated all three runners with a bases-clearing double, pushing the lead to 7-1.

Astros start the second half with a win

Bryan Abreu took over on the mound out of the bullpen in the bottom of the eighth. He, like McCullers Jr. before him, kept Chicago off the bases with a 1-2-3 inning on three groundouts. That left the ninth for Andre Scrubb, and despite allowing a leadoff single, was able to erase it to wrap up the dominant six-run win for the Astros to come out of the All-Star break with a win.

Up Next: The middle game of this series will start at 6:15 PM Central on Saturday. Chicago will send Lucas Giolito (7-6, 4.15 ERA) to the mound, and Houston will counter with Jake Odorizzi (3-4, 3.61 ERA).

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Astros defeat Marlins, 9-1. Composite Getty Image.

Framber Valdez struck out a season-high 10 and allowed one run in seven innings, and rookie Joey Loperfido homered and tripled to lead the Houston Astros to a 9-1 victory over the Miami Marlins on Wednesday night.

Valdez (8-5) allowed just six singles and earned his third straight win.

Loperfido hit a two-run homer as the Astros jumped on Bryan Hoeing (0-2) for four runs in the second inning to take a 5-0 lead. His first career triple came in the fourth inning.


The win was the eighth straight at home for the Astros, who have won eight of their last 11 games overall to improve to 48-44.

Rookie Xavier Edwards had two hits and drove in Miami’s only run.

Hoeing, who has made 11 relief appearances this season, permitted eight hits and five runs — four earned — in three innings in his second start of the year.

Jose Altuve hit a leadoff single before Yordan Alvarez walked with one out. Both players stole a base before Altuve scored on a single to right field by Yainer Diaz to make it 1-0. Alvarez attempted to score on the play, but was tagged out at the plate.

Jon Singleton singled to start Houston’s second and scored when Jake Meyers doubled to center field on a ball that was deflected by Jazz Chisholm Jr. as he crashed off the padded wall.

Meyers moved to third on a wild pitch by Hoeing before Loperfido’s one-out shot to right field made it 4-0. Alex Bregman hit an infield single with one out and Hoeing’s throwing error on the play left him at second.

Houston extended the lead to 5-0 when Bregman scored on a single to center field by Alvarez.

Loperfido tripled when his fly ball sailed just out of reach of Chisholm with no outs in the fourth. He scored when Bregman reached on a fielder’s choice that made it 6-0.

Edwards cut the lead to 6-1 on an RBI single with one out in the fifth.

An RBI double by Trey Cabbage pushed Houston’s advantage to 7-1 with one out in the sixth. Diaz smacked a single to center field to score two more after that and make it 9-1.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Astros: Alvarez was lifted for a pinch hitter in the fourth inning because of tightness in his right hip.

UP NEXT

Houston RHP Jake Bloss (0-0, 4.91 ERA) is scheduled to come off the injured list to make his second major league start in the series finale Thursday night. Bloss injured his shoulder in his MLB debut June 21 and threw four scoreless innings in a rehabilitation outing with Triple-A Sugar Land Saturday. RHP Roddery Muñoz (1-3, 5.48) will start for Miami.

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