It took a four-hit night from a rested Jose Altuve and a four-RBI night from a sizzling Carlos Correa to stop Houston's three-game losing streak as they thumped the Twins, 7-5, at the Bullseye on Tuesday night. Mike Fiers gave up four runs on three homers over five innings to get his eighth victory with help from a quartet of relievers.
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With Seattle pulling out an extra-inning win over Detroit, the Astros remained 1-1/2 games behind Seattle for second in the AL West and four games back of Boston for the final wild card spot.
Correa got the night started with a two-run blast to the left field stands off Hector Santiago in the first with Altuve aboard. Minnesota answered with a solo shot in the second by Miguel Sano.
Ex-Astro Robbie Grossman crushed a two-run homer to right off Fiers in the fifth to put the Twins up, 3-2, and Brian Dozier tacked on an insurance run with a homer to left for a 4-2 advantage.
But Correa responded with a two-run single that slammed off the right field wall before right fielder Max Kepler misplayed the hop for an error. Marwin Gonzalez added on with an RBI grounder to plate Altuve and give Houston back a 5-4 lead.
An RBI single to center by Altuve in the seventh chased home the Astros' sixth run and a sacrifice fly by George Springer in the ninth increased the lead to 7-4. Jake Marisnick scored that run after a triple and earlier gunned down Trevor Plouffe at the plate on a throw to Evan Gattis.
Ken Giles took the closer role to the ninth and allowed a run before striking out Kepler to notch only his second save of the year.
Dallas Keuchel (7-11), fresh off a three-hit complete-game masterpiece against the Rangers, will match up against veteran righthander Ervin "Magic" Santana (5-9) in a 7:10 Central rubber match. Like Keuchel, the Dominican is rebounding from a bad first half, lasting six innings or more in his last four starts and allowing two earned runs or less in each game.