Houston (CBS HOUSTON) – It wasn’t the most beautiful game of baseball ever played, but the Houston Astros Friday night did enough to beat the Minnesota Twins 10-5.
After a four day all-star break, the offense picked up right where they left off pounding out 14 hits, but the pitching wasn’t as crisp, allowing nine walks and the fielding wasn’t up to the team’s normal standard as two errors in the fifth inning would end up costing a run.
“To be honest, I don’t think that was a very clean game, I think we got a way with a lot, specifically the walks and a few missed plays in the field, so it wasn’t a game that we’re going to keep the video and continue to replay it, it was pretty ugly, but coming away with a win is all that matters,” manager A.J. Hinch said of the team’s first game back after the break.
Two pitches into the game the Astros were put behind the eight ball, with Charlie Morton’s second pitch, Brian Dozier put the Twins up 1-0 after a fastball caught just a little bit too much of the plate, and the leadoff hitter dumped the ball over the wall in left-center.
Dozier again would tag Morton in the fourth inning, after walking the bases loaded, with two outs and two strikes, the Twins lead off hitter, cleared the bases with a double.
Morton after the game was disappointed that walks and two pitches to Dozier changed what could have been a very good outing for him and instead made it difficult him to make it through five innings.
Luckily for Morton, the Astros offense quickly bailed him out of the 1-0 hole and provided him with plenty of run support.
In the second inning, the Astros would send 12 batters to the plate and score eight runs off of two different pitchers.
Against Jose Berrios, Brian McCann opened up the inning with a strikeout, but after a five pitch walk to Carlos Beltran, and a fielding error that allowed Yuli Gurriel to reach base, the Astros had two on with one out. Marwin Gonzalez kept things moving, with a single to plate Beltran, and like a snowball rolling down hill, the offense just kept coming and before you could blink five more batters reached base, and Berrios night was done after allowing five runs.
With Phil Hughes brought in to finish up the inning and provide the team with some innings out of the bullpen, he’d face McCann who started out the second with a strikeout. This time the Twins wouldn’t get so lucky, with two strikes, the Astros catcher would go down to almost one knee in order to grab a changeup way out of the zone, belting it over the right field wall for a three-run home run to cap off the scoring int he inning.
“One of the proudest moments that I have about our team, or one of the things I love about our team the most, is we just keep coming at you,” Hinch said about the offense. “At bat, after at bat continues to be good and we can put some big innings on some really good pitchers, if we get something extra, an extra walk, an extra base runner like today, we’ve been pretty good at capitalizing on some things, but when we put at bat’s like that together in a row we’re pretty dangerous.”
After scoring eight in the second, the Astros would pick up two more runs in the third. The team’s eight hitter Marwin Gonzalez would lead off the inning with his 17th home run, a career high, with a shot over the center-field wall and Josh Reddick would drive in George Springer with a single three batters later.
With the 10 runs, the Astros scored, it’s now the 15th time this season they’ve scored 10 or more runs in a game, which is the most in the major leagues.