The Astros produced their best offensive output of the season Tuesday night in Seattle yet still had to endure a nail-biting ninth inning to secure a 7-5 win at Seattle's Safeco Field. Four runs in the sixth inning proved the difference as Joe Musgrove lasted long enough to pick up his first win of the season.
Altuve: Imitates Michael Jordan
(c) Associated Press
George Springer belted his fourth leadoff homer of the year (his fifth overall) against Ariel Miranda. Jose Altuve added an RBI single in the third for a 2-0 lead. It was Altuve's first RBI of the season.
Seattle roared back in their half of the third to tie it up on Mitch Haniger's RBI double to left before Robinson Cano singled him home. Jarrod Dyson added a sacrifice fly in the fifth that put the Mariners ahead.
The top of the sixth seemed uneventful as Miranda retired the first two batters. Next, Brian McCann worked a seven-pitch walk then Marwin Gonzalez followed with an eight-pitch walk. That was all for Miranda as Manager Scott Servais brought in James Pazos from the bullpen.
Yuli Gurriel, who had three hits on the night, bounced a ball so high off the plate that he was past first before the Mariners could field it. That loaded the bases. Pinch-hitter Evan Gattis then blooped a 2-0 pitch to short right where Haniger, sliding for the catch, watched the ball kick off the heel of his glove for a three-run double that put the Astros back in front. Alex Bregman then singled home pinch-runner Jake Marisnick for a 6-3 advantage.
Musgrove lasted through 5-1/3rd innings, giving up seven hits and three runs. Miranda held on for 5-2/3rd innings, allowing seven hits and four runs.
The lead stayed that way until the ninth when Altuve doubled, stole third and came home on Carlos Beltran's RBI single. Houston produced season highs in both runs scored (7) and hits (14).
That eliminated the save situation for Ken Giles who made the Astros sweat nonetheless. Mike Freeman worked a ten-pitch walk in their half of the ninth. Taylor Motter, starting at shortstop in place of injured Jean Segura, cracked a double for his third hit of the game. Freeman scored on a wild pitch and Cano added another run on a fielder's choice before Nelson Cruz, as the potential winning run for the Mariners, flied out to deep center field to end the game.
The 5-4 Astros face their old Brewers/Rangers nemesis, Yovani Gallardo (0-1) in the 9:10 Central series finale Wednesday night. Mike Fiers (0-1) will pitch for the Astros. Gallardo is 15-5 lifetime against the Astros in 22 starts with an ERA of 3.15.
- Bob Hulsey