Gomez outstanding in return
(c) Houston Chronicle
Collin McHugh overcame a leadoff home run by Danny Santana to earn his third victory of the season as the Astros bested the Twins by a score of 6-4 Tuesday night at Minute Maid Park. Jason Castro and George Springer homered in support of McHugh, who gave up four runs on seven hits in 5-2/3 innings of work.
After Minnesota manufactured a run in the top of the third to take a 2-0 lead, Castro led off the bottom of the inning with a fly ball that barely cleared the leftfield wall. Later in the inning, Carlos Correa doubled to drive in Jose Altuve and tie the score. A wild pitch by Minnesota starter Alex Meyer scored Springer from third to give Houston a 3-2 lead.
The Astros extended their advantage in the fourth against reliever Tommy Milone. Carlos Gomez doubled to lead off the inning and was bunted to third by Luis Valbuena. After Castro walked, Gomez was able to jog home uncontested when Milone was called for a balk. After a wild pitch moved Castro to third, Springer hammered a Millone offering over the train tracks in left-center for a two-run shot.
Minnesota tallied a run in the fifth to cut the lead to 6-3 and an opposite-field homer by Byun Ho Park in the sixth brought he Twins to within two and chased McHugh from the game.
Ken Giles, Pat Neshek, and Will Harris combined to throw 2-1/3 perfect innings in relief and Luke Gregerson followed suit, making Twins hitters look silly in the ninth to record his sixth save of the season in 1-2-3 fashion.
The biggest story of the night may have been Carlos Gomez. The Astros' much-maligned ceterfielder brought his sexy back. Returning to the lineup after missing the last three games with a rib cage injury, Gomez smacked a pair of doubles, scored a run, and gunned down Miguel Sano at second base to start the sixth inning.
The Astros were out-hit by the Twins 7-5 but took advantage of Minnesota's mistakes to even the three-game series at one apiece. Mike Fiers (2-1, 4.97 ERA) goes up against Phil Hughes (1-4, 4.45) in Wednesday's 7:10 CDT rubber game.
- Greg Thurston