Los Angeles takes first of two games against Houston

Tensions high as Dodgers ride big inning to win against Astros

Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

In a rematch of the 2017 World Series, the Dodgers arrived in Houston on Tuesday for the first of two games at Minute Maid Park. As expected, the rivalry found itself rekindled in an exciting matchup. Here is a quick recap:

Final Score: Dodgers 5, Astros 2.

Record: 3-2, first in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Brusdar Graterol (1-1, 3.86 ERA).

Losing pitcher: Framber Valdez (0-1, 4.15 ERA).

Correa drives in the first two runs

After both Framber Valdez and Walker Buehler recorded 1-2-3 first innings, they would not have as clean second innings. In the top of the second, Valdez allowed his first baserunner via a two-out walk, then allowed a single, but was able to get out of the inning unscathed. Buehler also had a two-out issue, a Carlos Correa solo home run, which put Houston ahead 1-0.

Correa would drive in another run in the bottom of the fourth, getting an RBI-single to bring in Michael Brantley, who had singled earlier in the inning, doubling the lead to 2-0 and ending Buehler's night.

Dodgers roar back with a five-run fifth

Valdez was still on the mound in the fifth, but after loading the bases in the fifth would be taken out as Enoli Paredes would enter with one out and the bases still full. Paredes would struggle, walking in a run, seeing another come in on an error by Alex Bregman to tie the game, then giving up back-to-back RBI-singles to put Los Angeles up 4-2.

Andre Scrubb would come in to make his MLB debut and hopefully stop the damage, but instead issued a four-pitch walk to walk in another run before getting a double play to end the half-inning, making it a 5-2 deficit for Houston.

Benches clear in the sixth

Scrubb would do much better in his first full inning, retiring the Dodgers in order in the top of the sixth, including two strikeouts. In the bottom of the inning, the Dodgers would send Joe Kelly to the mound, who was clearly out to send a message to the Astros.

After throwing a ball four well behind Alex Bregman, interfering with Michael Brantley's path to first base on a groundball, he would get a strikeout to retire the Astros, then entice a bench-clearing confrontation by antagonizing Houston on his way back to the dugout.

Astros can't answer, Dodgers get the win

Scrubb continued in the seventh and despite loading the bases was able to complete the inning and keep it a three-run game. Nivaldo Rodriguez was yet another Houston reliever to make an MLB debut, and he was able to work around a couple of hits to record a scoreless top of the eighth.

Rodriguez continued pitching in the top of the ninth and was able to erase a few runners for another scoreless inning. The Astros would be unable to add on to Correa's two runs earlier in the game, resulting in a loss and moving them to 3-2 on the season.

Up Next: Game two of this two-game set will get underway at 6:00 PM Wednesday. The Astros have still not named their starter, and will likely rely on a young or newly acquired arm to start or go with a bullpen day, while the Dodgers will have Dustin May on the mound.

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The Houston Texans have just a couple of practices before their preseason debut. Here are 11 observations from Tuesday’s workout.

1.The offense stunk on Tuesday. It was inconsistent and resembled more of last year’s disappointing performances than any other practices in this training camp.

2. Davis Mills and his receivers had a few miscommunications on Tuesday. Mills sailed a pass to nobody when he and Brandin Cooks weren’t on the same page. There were some other throws to nowhere in the day. It was something that hadn’t been present at all in training camp to this point.

3. There were a few “good coverage” notes on Tuesday. Not to say there was one specific player, but a handful of team-level efforts that led to the note.

4. It wasn’t all wrong from the offense. After a pass to nowhere Davis Mills and the offense bounced back. It was a second down during a team drill and Mills fired a pass to Chris Moore for six yards. Rex Burkhead would pick up a first down on a rush a play later. A non-positive play last year on first down doomed this team. That hopefully won’t be the case for this year’s team.

5. Chad Beebe is going into his fifth season in the NFL, his first with the Texans. The former Vikings pass catcher has flashed a few times in training camp. He has an uphill battle being new to the team but is trying to make himself a factor.

6. Phillip Dorsett had a big catch over the middle. Davis Mills stood back and delivered as the offensive line held up and Dorsett reeled it in for a huge gain. No defenders were around him. It is between Dorsett and Chris Moore for the chance to be the slot wideout opening day. With Dorsett’s return to practice, it is becoming a fun camp battle.

7.Speaking of returns to practice, Tytus Howard was back. Howard has his reps managed and after practice, offensive line coach George Warhop Howard was “getting his wind” back. When Howard was having his reps managed rookie tackle Austin Deculus played at right tackle. Deculus looks much more consistent than minicamp and OTAs.

8. Kenyon Green is still out with an injury. It is getting to a critical time where the time missed might prevent the first-rounder from starting week one. Max Scharping hasn’t looked bad in his chances with the first team. Offensive line coach George Warhop said they believe in Green and his ability and he has been in meetings to stay up to date.

9. Ka’imi Fairbairn was perfect in one of the special team periods. He drilled all five kicks, each further than the last, and was crushing the football.

10. Derek Stingley was very sticky in some early reps on Nico Collins. The third overall pick is so smooth when he is working. Later his coverage forced a throw from the offense that had no chance of being completed.

11. The play of the day was made by Derek Stingley. The offense was about five or six yards out of the end zone needing a touchdown to win. With six seconds left on the clock, any completed pass that wasn’t a touchdown was game over. Davis Mills dropped back a step and fired to Nico Collins who Stingley covered. The rookie kept the second-year player out of the end zone to earn the defense a win. This was one of the better Stingley days and he did a lot of work. At one point, it looked as though he and Rex Burkhead had some words and almost led to an offense and defense scuffle, but it stayed to just some shouting. The rookie shined today.

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