Associated Press MIAMI — Short on sleep, the Houston Astros were listless and hitless until the fifth inning. Then their lumber stirred from its slumber. Yuli Gurriel hit a grand slam and Jose Altuve homered and drove in three runs as Houston overcame a slow start to beat the Miami Marlins 7-2 Monday night. The […]
MIAMI — Short on sleep, the Houston Astros were listless and hitless until the fifth inning. Then their lumber stirred from its slumber.
Yuli Gurriel hit a grand slam and Jose Altuve homered and drove in three runs as Houston overcame a slow start to beat the Miami Marlins 7-2 Monday night.
The Astros arrived at their hotel at 5 a.m. after a doubleheader in New York against the Yankees, and Dan Straily shut them out for five innings.
“Sometimes it takes a little while to get untracked,” Houston manager A.J. Hinch said. “Credit to the pitcher when he does that against an offense like this.”
Straily left the game after a comebacker bruised his right arm, and the Astros’ bats soon came to life. Josh Reddick doubled in the sixth off Junichi Tazawa (1-1), and after a walk and a hit batter loaded the bases, Gurriel pulled a 94 mph fastball over the fence with two outs for a 4-1 lead.
The Astros’ second grand slam of the year was also their second in two games. Alex Bregman hit one in Sunday night’s win at Yankee Stadium.
It’s the first time Houston has ever had slams in consecutive games.
Altuve shook off a fastball to the hand in the first inning and homered into the Marlins Park home run sculpture in the ninth.
“It was a long day Sunday,” Altuve said. “But we got some rest and did what we’ve been doing — playing really good ball.”
Joe Musgrove (3-3) allowed one run in 5 2/3 innings for the Astros (27-12), who climbed 15 games above .500 for the first time since 2005. They have the best record in the majors and are off to the best start in franchise history.
Houston began the game leading the American League in hits and batting average but managed only one hit in five innings against Straily.
The right-hander left the game as a precaution after he was hit near his pitching elbow by a line drive off Evan Gattis’ bat to start the fifth. A bruise just below the elbow was visible almost immediately, but after consulting with a trainer and manager Don Mattingly, Straily finished the inning.
Straily said he expects to make his next start despite the bruise.
“The ball caught me right on a muscle on my foreman,” he said. “I’m very fortunate that it wasn’t at my face or hitting any bones in my arm. I got pretty lucky in that regard. Hopefully it’s just a sore muscle in my arm.”
Altuve was hit on the left hand by a 92 mph fastball from Straily but stayed in the game and contributed a two-run single in the seventh, then hit his sixth homer in the ninth.
“In the moment I felt it a little, but then it went away,” Altuve said. “I was able to swing the bat, so I feel good, especially because we won.”
The Astros’ George Springer went 0 for 5, ending his 13-game hitting streak.
Justin Bour homered and had three hits for the Marlins. They outhit the Astros 12-8 but went 1 for 10 with runners in scoring position and fell to 1-6 on their homestand.
Three Miami relievers combined to allow seven runs in four innings. Tazawa’s ERA rose to 6.60, and he has allowed four homers in 16 innings.
“I don’t want to make excuses,” he said. “I’ll continue to work hard and hope I can help this team.”
The Marlins had two runners thrown out on the bases in the third. J.T. Riddle was out trying to stretch a single when left fielder Norichika Aoki made a strong throw to second. Dee Gordon singled with two outs and was picked off.
Straily has allowed only 24 hits in 43 innings this year, but is winless since April 11 and 1/3 overall.
Houston LHP Dallas Keuchel (6-0, 1.69 ERA) tries to become the first seven-game winner in the majors when he starts Tuesday night against RHP Tom Koehler (1-1, 5.60).
More AP baseball: https://apnews.com/tag/MLBbaseball
You must log in to post a comment.