Well, well. This was a see-saw game that ended up with the Braves on their butts. Astros win 10-4.
*The Astros won thanks to a 6-run 7th inning. It's only the second time this season the Astros have scored 6+ runs in an inning.
*With the win, it marks the 15th time the Astros have won a series opener, going 15-22.
*Chris Johnson crept up in the lineup, hitting 6th, and responded with a 2x4, 2-run, 3RBI night. With those hits, his hit streak runs to seven games. Since the All-Star Break, Johnson is hitting .423/.453/.718 (helped along by a .475 BABIP).
*Michael Bourn, Jeff Keppinger, Carlos Lee, and Brett Wallace also had two hits each. The Astros got seven RBI on the night - four of them between Johnson and Wallace.
*Jason Castro was your rally killer - going 0x4, striking out three times, ending two innings. That runs Castro's K:BB ratio to 2.25. In the minors, his K:BB ratio was 1.30.
*Hunter Pence drew two walks on the night. It was the first time since July 16 that Pence had walked - 91 plate appearances.
*Bud Norris, the heir apparent to Roy Oswalt's vacant King of the No Decision crown, threw 6.2IP, 7H/4ER, 3K:2BB. Tim Byrdak, who got the final out in the 7th, got the win. Norris threw first-pitch strikes to 14 of 28 batters, and 31 of his 63 strikes were non-contact strikes (20 called, 11 swinging).
*Good news: It's the fourth start in a row - and sixth in his last seven - that Norris has gone 6+ innings. In five of those seven starts, however, he's allowed 4+ earned runs.
*That said, the Astros have ended up winning the last three games Norris has started, scoring 36 runs in those three games (total, not just while Norris has been in). They scored 33 runs his first 14 starts this season.
*Pitch Count Hero: Chris Johnson (2x4) - 23 pitches in four PAs.
*Pitch Count Punk: Carlos Lee (2x4) - 13 pitches in four PAs.
*Man of the Match: Chris Johnson
*Goat of the Game: Jason Castro, called a decent game, but the .186 average hurts. But to be clear, it's not like I want anybody else behind the plate.