Houston (CBS HOUSTON) – The Houston Astros pitching proved to be the problem Friday night as the Los Angeles Angels beat them 9-4, on the first night of a nine-game home stand.
Starting for the for the fourth time this season, Brad Peacock did not have his a A-game as he’d only last three innings after allowing four runs on seven hits and four walks.
“Just didn’t feel right out there,” Brad Peacock said of his short outing. “They put together some good at-bats and I paid for it, but I just wasn’t getting ahead (of the count).”
The outing seemed doomed from the start for Peacock.
Facing Cameron Maybin who was activated off the DL right before the game, he’d led off bouncing what seemed to be a routine grounder right to Marwin Gonzalez over at first base, but the ball took a wild turn at the last second and an easy out turned into an infield single.
Maybin used his wheels and after two stolen bases he was on third with only an out in the inning.
“It was not our night on the mound, I think we had close to eight or nine free bases in some capacity,” manager A.J. Hinch said of his team’s outing Friday night.
Maybin would end up coming around to score after Peacock walked three straight batters, he’d regroup and escape the inning only allowing the one run to score.
But the Angels seemed to have Peacock figured out has they pick up six more hits and three more runs over the next two innings.
“Fastball didn’t feel good,” Peacock said of his outing. “Slider actually felt pretty good but they were kinda taking it and not swinging at it, they did a good job, good at-bats.”
For Peacock, while he didn’t have his normal command, he did help himself and keep the Angels from really opening the game wide open.
In the second inning, Peacock got a key pick-off at second base, Maybin right after would hit a ground-rule double, which would have scored the runner. In the third against what would end up being his final batter, he’d strike Danny Espinosa out looking with two runners on, holding the Angels to four runs through three innings.
“He had a hard time pounding the zone, but to be honest with you, to only get away with four runs with the bases drunk, it could have been worse,” Brian McCann said of Peacock’s start. “He minimized damage when he needed to, you are going to have starts like that where you miss the zone a little bit.”
The Astros pitching did not have it Friday and what made things even worse was Maybin. The Angels centerfielder was a major thorn in the Astros side collecting four hits, scoring four runs and stealing four bases.
“He can create a lot of havoc, I’ve got a personal history with him,” Hinch said of Maybin. ” I’ve seen him get a couple of infield hits and then he does create some issues.”
The Angels pitching staff held the Astros offense in check, starter Matt Shoemaker pitched seven innings, only allowing four runs to score.
Alex Bregman in the seventh inning launched a two-run bomb, but at that point, the Astros were already down 8-2.
Also in the game, the Astros turned to recently called up Francis Martes to come in out of the bullpen and help save the pitching staff.
The Astros number one pitching prospect would toss 3.2 innings and allow four runs in his major league debut. The 21-year-old touched 98 mph during his outing and retired his childhood idol, Albert Pujols, twice.