The Astros beat the Mariners 3-2 to improve to 50-40, snapping a two-game skid. Framber did Framber Things. The Offense did Offense Things. They're the 4th AL team to hit 50 wins. The Astros are two back of the Rangers, and are guaranteed to head into the Break no more than three games back.
Game Number of 50th Win, Astros recent history:
*The Astros improved to 10-10 in 1-run games.
*After scoring six runs in the final game of the Rockies series, the Astros have scored five runs in the last three games.
*Houston won despite only getting four hits, improving to 1-9 when recording four or fewer hits.
*Alex Bregman has an RBI in consecutive games for the first time since June 24-25. He has two extra-base hits in his last 58 PAs.
*Framber: 6IP, 5H/2ER, 6K:2BB. He ends the first half with a 3.2 fWAR, 2.51 ERA. He's one of five pitchers to post at least a 3.0 fWAR in the first half (Gauman, Gallen, Wheeler, and Strider are the others).
We needed it very badly against them. We were 1-4 [vs Seattle] going into today and...we wanted to pick up a game or two this weekend. And the fact Texas lost. I didn't think they had a good chance of losing, but baseball is baseball.
Framber wants to start the All-Star Game.
We had them against the ropes and couldn't deliver the knockout punch. On the road, you've got to score and not just, like, get one in that inning. In my mind, I'm hoping we get two or three when you get the bases loaded. Then you look up and [Neris] wiggled his way out of it.
Matt Kawahara notes (first link) that Saturday was Neris' 110th appearance since the beginning of the 2022 season. Provided he doesn't finish 2023 on the IL, the club option for 2024 converts to a player option.
*Ryan Pressly walked a batter for the first time since June 20 - a span of 27 batters between walks. Pressly's last ten games: 11IP, 0H/1R (0ER), 11K:4BB.
*Martin Maldonado hit the go-ahead homer in the bottom of the 8th to provide the game-winning run. It's the latest in a game he has homered since September 21, 2022. Five of his six home runs in 2023 have come with the bases empty.
*Yordan, Bregman, and Tucker all have 55+ RBI, the first time since 2001 that the Astros have had three players with 55+ RBI before the All-Star Break.
*Ronel Blanco was optioned to Sugar Land, and Joel Kuhnel was brought up. Blanco can be optioned two more times this season before being put on outright waivers first.
*Mauricio Dubon has had a fortuitous first half.
*Yordan Alvarez took BP prior to the game and hit balls 107, 109, and 111mph.
SETX-area guys in ESPN's projected first 70 picks include Blake Mitchell (Sinton HS) and Kendall George (Atascocita HS). And the Chronicle put together a full list of Houston-area draft prospects.
*Elly De La Cruz got a single, and then proceeded to steal 2nd, 3rd, and home.
*Bob Huggins is Hugginsing things up, naturally.
*A Musical Selection: