Bud Norris (4-4, 3.71) vs Jerome Williams (4-1, 2.58)
Well, well, well... don't look now, National Media, or you might have to admit that the Astros aren't playing like the whipping boys you so badly want them to be. Tonight was a good ol' fashioned
National American League pitcher's duel, with neither team scoring through six, and Houston limited to just one hit. But good teams, they say, will find a way to win the close ones, and the Astros have been playing at least like a respectable team for the last 2+ weeks. The winning streak is now at a season-high 4, as the Astros down the Angels again by a 2-0 score. They're now 9-7 since May 15, and 19-37 overall.
On the Mound:
*Bud Norris was back in full BudChuck form against Albert Pujols and the
Cardinals Angels. Jerome Williams had been marginally better through 6, but the Astros got the better of Williams in the 7th, making Bud a well-deserving winner. His line: 6 IP / 4 H / 0 R / 0 ER / 3 BB / 6 K.
*Jose Cisnero allowed two hits in two scoreless innings, earning himself a hold.
*Jose Veras just had to make things interesting, allowing the Angels to get runners on first and third after two outs and bringing Mike Trout to the plate. But Veras mercifully got Trout to ground out, clinching the win and notching his 10th save.
At the Plate:
*cHRis Carter, we love you. He took a hanging slider over the Los Angeles bullpen in the 7th with one on for the game's only scoring play. The HR was Carter's 11th of the season, and he finished 1 for 4 with 2 K.
*Carlos Pena was the only Astro with a hit through the first six innings, doubling in the 2nd to go 1 for 3 with a BB and a K.
*J.D. Martinez singled and scored on Carter's home run, finishing 1 for 4 with a K.
*Jose Altuve went 1 for 4 with a K and has hit safely in 8 of his last 9 games, but his batting average (.299) still fell below .300 for the first time since G7 back on April 8.
*Jason Castro singled and stole a base, finishing 1 for 4.
Preceding cHRis Carter's 7th-inning blast, Bud Norris may have saved the game for the Astros in the bottom of the 6th. Bud gave up a one-out double to Mike Trout, but picked him off second for the second out. Which was important, because he followed by walking Albert Pujols and Mark Trumbo, then allowed an infield single to Josh Hamilton that loaded the bases. But he got a huge strikeout of Howie Kendrick to preserve the scoreless tie and erase the Angels' biggest scoring threat.
Man of the Match:
Studly Cuddly Budly, starting June off strong.
Goat of the Game:
Ronny Cedeno. 0 for 3 with 2 K.