Logan Morrison latest Astro-killer
(c) Associated Press
Astros fans have enjoyed some outstanding baseball in 2015 but Wednesday night's game against the Mariners brought back memories of recent seasons we'd like to forget. A passed ball by Hank Conger and a throwing error by Pat Neshek helped Seattle score a couple of gift runs. Add in Carlos Gomez getting picked off first after a leadoff walk, and an offense that turned into the walking dead after the third inning, and you have all the ingredients for an 8-3 loss.
Despite some early control issues for Astros starter Scott Kazmir the game looked fairly promising after three innings. Scott managed to hold the Mariners to only two runs while Evan Gattis and company pushed three runners across the plate.
The first Houston run of the evening was delivered by Preston Tucker. In his first plate appearance since a 10-day stint in AAA, Tucker smacked a single to rightfield, scoring Colby Rasmus. A 2-out single by Gattis in the third gave the Astros a 3-2 lead. But there was no more magic in the Astros bat rack on this evening.
Seattle starter Taijuan Walker made quick work of the Astros over the next few innings, retiring ten straight batters before allowing a couple of base-runners in the seventh. The Astros had opportunities to score against the Seattle bullpen in the late innings but couldn't come through in the clutch.
Neshek's second rough outing in as many days resulted in his second straight loss. A leadoff walk to Logan Morrison, followed by a Neshek throwing error on Jesus Sucre's sacrifice bunt helped the Mariners turn a 3-3 tie into a 2-run advantage. Josh Fields didn't help matters in the ninth when he gave up a pair of singles in front of a fly ball by Morrison that reached the Crawford Boxes.
The Astros get a chance to regroup on Thursday's off day before hosting a red-hot Twins team for a 3-game series over the weekend. Collin McHugh gets the start for the Astros and Mike Pelfrey goes for Minnesota. George Springer, who has been out with a wrist injury since July 1st, could be back in the Astros lineup.
- Greg Thurston