ASTROS DROP 4 STRAIGHT

Yankees beat Astros 4-3 for opening 4-game sweep

Astros Chas McCormick, JP France
The Astros are back in action Monday night against Toronto. Composite Getty Image.

Juan Soto had three hits capped by an RBI single with two outs in the ninth inning that lifted the New York Yankees to a 4-3 win Sunday that completed an opening four-game sweep of the Houston Astros.

With the score 3-3, Gleyber Torres singled off closer Josh Hader (0-1) with two outs in the ninth inning and stole second base. Soto then singled on a line drive to left field.

“It just put a bow on the series of what we saw in his at-bats,” manager Aaron Boone said.

Soto hit .529 (9 for 17) with four RBIs in his first games with the Yankees after his trade from San Diego, helping New York to its first 4-0 start since 2003 and just its fourth since 1950.

“That's the kind of start I wanted,” Soto said with a laugh. “I grinded really hard this offseason and in spring training to be successful in the beginning of the season.”

The Astros had a shot to tie it in the bottom of the inning against Clay Holmes. Jeremy Peña and pinch-hitter Victor Caratini singled and Jose Altuve hit a hard grounder that third baseman Jon Berti snagged with dive and scrambled to third for a forceout.

Yordan Alvarez hit a drive 2 inches foul of the left-field line and followed with a fly that advanced pinch-runner Mauricio Dubón to third. Alex Verdugo made a sliding catch in left field on a ball hit by Kyle Tucker to end it and give Holmes his third save.

“It's just a lot of fun watching these guys continue to compete, and it’s happening on both sides of the ball,” Boone said.

Nick Burdi (1-0) got the last two outs of the eighth for his first big league win since April 17, 2019 for Pittsburgh against Detroit. Yankees relievers pitched 15 1/3 scoreless innings in the series.

Altuve homered and doubled for the Astros, 0-4 for the first time since dropping their first five in 2011. Houston has lost nine straight home games dating to last year, including the playoffs, and has lost seven in a row to the Yankees.

“I like the fight,” first-year manager Joe Espada said. “That’s what it's all about. Give yourself a chance. You fight to the last out of the game and if you do that you’re going to find yourself in a good spot to win games.”

The Astros trailed by 2 when Altuve got things going in the sixth when he doubled to left field. Tucker’s double with one out in the inning scored Altuve to cut the lead to 3-2 and chase Clarke Schimdt.

Jonathan Loaisiga took over and Yainer Diaz’s RBI single with two outs tied it at 3-3.

Giancarlo Stanton doubled in the second and scored on Jose Trevino's single, and Altuve's homer tied the score in the third. Anthony Rizzo doubled to start the fourth and scored on Berti's single for a 2-1 lead, and Aaron Judge hit a sacrifice fly in the fifth.

Schmidt gave up three runs and seven hits in 5 1/3 innings.

“Obviously you don't play playoff games in March, but this was a big-time series and a big-time sweep and a really good way to start the season,” Schmidt said.

Houston starter J.P. France allowed three runs and six hits in 5 2/3 innings.

UP NEXT

Yankees: New York RHP Luis Gil opposes Arizona RHP Ryne Nelson when the Yankees open a three-game series against the Diamondbacks on Monday night.

Astros: Houston RHP Ronel Blanco faces Toronto RHP Bowden Francis when the Astros and Blue Jays start a three-game series Monday night.

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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.

UP NEXT

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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