CBS Houston – Wins in this series have been pretty rare, but the Houston Astros pulled it off beating the Texas Rangers 8-4.
Only leading 5-4 heading into the bottom of the eighth Astros fans started to get restless. Less than 24 hours earlier the team had seen a one-run lead disappear in the ninth inning, ultimately losing after allowing two runs to score in the inning.
Looking to avoid the same close game pressure that has dominated the season series, the Astros offense kicked into gear. Rangers reliever Tanner Scheppers who shut down the Astros in the game before would have no such luck in the bottom of the eighth.
Runners on second and third with one out, Evan Gattis would get intentionally walked, loading the bases for Marwin Gonzalez. Scheppers juiced a 3-1 fastball ball which Gonzalez would not miss, taking the ball for a two-run single.
“I wasn’t expecting that since he’s a righty,” Marwin Gonzalez said of the Rangers loading the bases for him, “maybe they were looking for a double-play, I was just trying to put the ball in play, a fly ball or whatever (instead) I got a hit.”
Jake Marisnick would single a batter later driving home another run before the inning would come to an end. In total, the Astros would send eight batters to the plate and score three runs in the inning giving them a nice cushion heading into the ninth.
Chris Devenski would come in the ninth and close things out for the team. With the win, the team picks up only their fourth win in 15 tries against the Rangers.
“We need every win no matter who we are facing,” Gonzalez said, “we need this game, the last couple of days were kinda bad and I think this is what we need to go from here.”
In the previous two games, the team had chances at winning both and help close the gap in the race for the second wild card. Instead, they saw them lose ground and the Seattle Mariners jumped over them in the standings.
As they head out on one of the final road trips of the season they are 3.5 games back of the Toronto Blue Jays for the second wildcard spot.