Freddy Garcia (2-2, 3.57) vs Dallas Keuchel (2-2, 5.10)
So very many funs! If it seemed the week couldn't get any better for Astros fans, following the Angels sweep and with the Draft on tap tomorrow night, Houston put on a full AL power display tonight. Six different Astros went deep in the first four innings, and Dallas Keuchel was rock solid for the second straight start. Only Houston's bullpen kept the game from being a complete laugher, but even that didn't matter, and the Astros down the Orioles 11-7. On the eve of their second straight #1 overall pick, Houston helps Miami open up a 6-game lead for the 2014 #1 pick, improving to 22-38 overall.
On the Mound:
*Astros starters really seem to be taking an "okay, me next" approach based on their recent successes. Tonight was Dallas Keuchel's turn, and he didn't disappoint at all, delivering a 6 IP / 5 H / 1 R / 1 ER / 2 BB / 3 K line.
*The bullpen was handed a 9-1 lead, which was fortunate, because they would have entirely nutted a smaller margin. Paul Clemens was the first victim, allowing 3 ER on 3 H in 1 IP.
*Travis Blackley then did (Not Roger) one worse, allowing 3 ER on 3 H and 2 BB in 0.1 IP.
*Hector Ambriz allowed one of his runners inherited from Blackley to score, but otherwise stopped the bleeding with the final two outs of the 8th.
*Jose Veras got the 9th in a non-save situation tonight, but allowed only an infield single while fanning two to end the game.
At the Plate:
*So much offense, where to begin? Every Astro had at least one hit, and all but two had at least an extra-base hit.
*Castro the Astro struck first, blasting a two-run HR in the 1st to go 1 for 4 with 2 R, a BB, and 2 K. The HR was #8 of 2013 for Jason.
*Carlos Pena was next, matching Castro with a two-run HR of his own in the 1st, finishing 1 for 3 with a BB and a K. It was HR #6 for Pena.
*Marwin Gonzalez was third in Houston's Home Run Derby, launching a solo shot in the 2nd for his fourth of the year. He finished 2 for 4 with 2 K.
*Matty D came fourth, blasting a solo shot in the 4th for his ninth of the season. He almost went deep again later on, but settled for a two-run double in the 7th to finish 2 for 4 with 3 RBI.
*Jose Altuve was fifth in the long ball parade, knocking a solo HR in the 4th for his third of the season, going 2 for 5 with 2 R and a K.
*J.D. Martinez had Houston's sixth home run of the night, and their third of the 4th inning, with another two-run HR (#6 for him). He finished 1 for 5 with a K.
*Brandon Barnes didn't homer again, but he did double to go 1 for 4 with a BB and a K.
*Carlos Corporan was one of two Astros who hit only singles, but he still did pretty alright for himself, turning in a 3 for 3 night with a BB and 2 R.
*Trevor Crowe had only one single on the night, finishing 1 for 4 with a K, but he did also score a run.
Baltimore actually took the first lead of the game, scoring their only run against Dallas Keuchel in the 1st, but Houston made sure that didn't last long. Brandon Barnes started by grounding out, but Altuve singled and Castro went deep to give Houston a 2-1 lead. J.D. Martinez lined out, then the pattern repeated, with a single by Corporan and a home run by Carlos Pena, to make the score 4-1. Houston never looked back, and another four-run inning in the 4th nailed the coffin shut on Baltimore.
Man of the Match:
Dallas Keuchel and Every Astros Hitter. Kid Keuchy turned in maybe his best start of the season.
Goat of the Game:
Travis Blackley. Allowing five base runners and three runs in one third of a inning is ugly pitching.