Houston is on a roll

Astros secure series over White Sox with sixth straight win

Houston's offense helped extend the Astros winning streak Saturday night. Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

With the exciting walk-off win thanks to Yordan Alvarez in the bottom of the ninth in game two, Houston had a 2-0 grip on this series, looking to secure the series with a win on Saturday night. They'd get it done, thanks to more offensive success, grabbing their sixth straight game.

Final Score: Astros 7, White Sox 3

Astros' Record: 42-28, second in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Framber Valdez (4-0)

Losing Pitcher: Lance Lynn (7-3)

Astros pull away with big third inning

The early goings gave the impression that this one may go down to the wire again, with Houston and Chicago grinding out one run each through two and a half innings. Houston's game in the bottom of the first, as Jose Altuve would reach on an error, move to third on a single, then score on a wild pitch. Chicago tied things up in the top of the third against Framber Valdez, getting a two-out single followed by an RBI double to make it 1-1.

Houston would not leave the game tied for long, getting back in front on an RBI single by Michael Brantley in the bottom of the third. They went on to load the bases, setting up a big three-RBI double by Robel Garcia to push the lead to 5-1. They added another in the bottom of the next inning, with Brantley getting his second RBI in as many innings on a double to make it 6-1.

Valdez goes seven and gives up three

Valdez kept rolling along on the mound or Houston, rebounding from the one-run third to erase a walk in the fourth, getting a 1-2-3 fifth, then erasing another walk in the sixth to keep it 6-1. Chicago would finally get to him in the top of the seventh, getting a solo home run to start the frame, then later watching a single score after a flyout and throwing error moved the runner around. That would be the end of Valdez's night, still an overal success: 7.0 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 5 K, 1 HR, 108 P.

Houston secures the series win

Now a 6-3 game, Ryne Stanek game in for the top of the eighth to try and keep it there. Although he'd deal with traffic on two singles, he'd accomplish his mission. Carlos Correa added an insurance run in the bottom half, getting an opposite-field solo homer to make it 7-3. With Ryan Pressly already warm, he would come in for the top of the ninth to close things out, sitting down Chicago 1-2-3 to wrap up the victory, which gives Houston the series and makes it six games in a row.

Up Next: The Astros will look to complete the four-game sweep in the finale at 1:10 PM Central on Sunday. It'll be a matchup of friends and old teammates, as Dallas Keuchel (6-1, 3.78) for Chicago will make his first start against his former team, while Lance McCullers Jr. (3-1, 2.89 ERA) will take the mound for Houston.

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We'll see if Watson is in pads on Tuesday. Photo courtesy of the Houston Texans.

The Houston Texans had their last practice before pads come on for the first time on Tuesday. There was plenty to see on Monday.

1. Deshaun Watson had his usual extremely light level of work. He did very little throwing to teammates, though he did throw to the tight ends in 1-on-1 drills.

2. Texans head coach David Culley said "nothing has changed" when asked if Deshaun Watson will be in pads Tuesday. Culley has maintained that answer for a couple of sessions now.

3. Quarterback Tyrod Taylor was back after missing Saturday with an excused personal day. Taylor has been the best quarterback in camp by a wide margin. Taylor makes better decisions with the football than other quarterbacks, but he does struggle on deeper passes. Taylor missed wildly on one deep ball and was a little wobbly on another.

4. Nobody in camp can cover wide receiver Brandin Cooks. This could be the easiest training camp of his life. He easily gets open in 1-on-1 situations.

5. Rookie wide receiver Nico Collins continues to flash his abilities in camp. Collins easily shook loose from defensive back John Reid and took the route vertical for an easy score. Collins later had a tough catch in traffic.

6. It's only been a few days, but the competition for inside wide receiver reps is tough. Former Bears wideout Anthony Miller has looked quick and nothing like the "draft bust" the Bears fans watched. Keke Coutee has rarely lost a rep, but Desmond King did win a few times over Coutee in the opening days of camp. Former Bengals wideout Alex Erickson finds himself constantly open. The cuts at wide receiver are already shaking out to be difficult.

7. Davis Mills bounced back in a sense that he couldn't be worse than he was on Saturday. The performance from Mills on Saturday was abysmal, but head coach David Culley said he liked how Mills responded today. With Tyrod Taylor back, there were fewer reps for Mills, but he had some impressive throws to go along with an off-target throw or two. Mills was far better than Jeff Driskel on Monday. Driskel tossed two interceptions right to defenders, including one that would've gone the wrong way for a score.

8. This linebacker group is interesting. With a new defensive scheme under Lovie Smith, the type of linebacker is very different from previous years. There was a clear emphasis on cover ability as these linebackers were added to the team.

9. Kamu Grugier-Hill and Kevin Pierre-Louis have both had some significant wins for the linebackers in coverage.

10. Rookie tight end Brevin Jordan looks the part physically, but he's had a rough few days, including a drop on Monday.

11. With the pads coming on Tuesday, it will be fun to watch the rebuilt defensive line clash with the many combinations of the offensive line. There will be no J.J. Watt who historically stirred up the team on day one of pads. Laremy Tunsil's cool confidence about the offensive line over the weekend leads me to believe they are a confident group, while there are spots to be won on the defensive side of the line.

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