Even though they would get out to an early 1-0 lead, the Astros would eventually give way to a 7-3 loss at the hands of the Rangers. Texas has now won the last seven meetings between these clubs at Minute Maid Park.
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CJ Wilson was just too much for the Astros hitters to handle on Tuesday night. He was able to scatter seven hits and two earned runs over his seven innings pitched. Twelve hits from his teammates including a triple from him (first career hit), and the seven runs didn’t hurt his cause too much either.
“He’s got a little slider or a cutter (cut fastball) whatever that is, and he can back door it,” Jeff Keppinger said of CJ Wilson. “He can back door his curve ball and he can front door his curveball. His heater, he’s good velocity on his fastball, he can spot up. He’s a pretty good pitcher.”
Jeff Keppinger factored into one of the night’s storylines. He grounded into an inning ending 6-4-3 double play in the sixth, with him getting thrown out by an eyelash at first base. That all got started with the Rangers starting shortstop Andres Blanco throwing to Ian Kinsler seated on his backside. Brad Mills disagreed with first base umpire Jerry Layne’s call so much that he’d eventually be thrown out of the game in between the innings for arguing the call.
In the grand scheme of things, Keppinger didn’t let the call bother him too much. “Those guys make mistakes, so its gonna happen,” Keppinger said. “We make mistakes out there playing too, they’re due for missing a call here and there.”
Astros starter Jordan Lyles had a rough couple of innings that ended up contributing to his third loss of this young Major League career. He’d give up five runs in his six innings pitched. Both sets of runs came in the third and sixth innings. Texas scored three in the third, the leadoff triple from CJ Wilson got it started and he’d come home on an Ian Kinsler RBI groundout to shortstop. Then, with two outs and no one on base, Josh Hamilton sent a deep fly ball just over the yellow line high atop the left-centerfield wall for a solo homer and his eighth of the year. This was followed by a Nelson Cruz’s RBI single to plate Adrian Beltre a few batters later. The two Ranger runs in the sixth, came from catcher Yorvit Torrealba’s RBI double plating first baseman Mitch Moreland, and then Torrealba would eventually score on an Ian Kinsler RBI triple. This all contributed to Lyles’ rough night on the bump.
“I don’t know what the ball to strike ratio was tonight, but I felt like it couldn’t have been good,” Lyles said. I guess I missed a lot of spots, so they might not have been balls, I just left balls over the plate. That’s just as bad as a ball.”
Lyles threw 109 pitches in the outing, 41 balls and 68 for strikes.
After he exited for the night, the Rangers added two more runs with solo homers from Mitch Moreland and Ian Kinsler. Moreland hit his in the eighth inning and Kinsler’s came in the ninth. Both homers were off Aneury Rodriguez. Kinsler was a double and a single away from hitting for the cycle.
The Astros runs came off a Hunter Pence single to score Michael Bourn in the first, the same happened in the sixth, and Brett Wallace stepped off the Astros bench to deliver a pinch-hit single to score Clint Barmes in the ninth.
Jason Bourgeois left Tuesday’s game in the sixth inning, with a strained right quadriceps muscle. Something that he says has been bothering him over the past week. He’ll know more about the long-term prognosis for the injury a little later today.
Brett Myers tries to turn the Astros luck around tonight when he takes the mound against the Rangers Colby Lewis.