Crazy things happen at Coors Field and far nuttier things have happened than what took place Tuesday night in Houston's 8-2 win. The zaniness is more about how the game unraveled.
Cole: Great for six
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After a weather delay, Alex Bregman clubbed a two-run homer to open the game and Jose Altuve followed with a single. You're thinking "Typical Coors Game", yes?
Wrong. The Astros did not get another hit the rest of regulation play. That was mostly thanks to Tyler Anderson another lefthander to dazzle Houston hitters.
Gerrit Cole throws six shutout innings and strikes out nine. You're thinking "Typical Gerrit Cole", yes?
Yes, until Nolan Arenado and Carlos Gonzalez stroke consecutive doubles in the seventh and Gerardo Parra ties it with a single to right. Collin McHugh was needed to get Cole out of the inning with just the two runs allowed. The Rockies also put a man on third in the eighth but Joe Smith wriggled out of trouble.
Through nine innings, the Rockies outhit the Astros by the un-Coors-like margin of 5-3. Then came the 10th.
With former closer Wade Davis on the hill, Josh Reddick singled to open the 10th then galloped to third on Charlie Blackmon's misplay in center. Marwin Gonzalez couldn't squeeze him home and Max Stassi walked.
Tiny Tony Kemp delivered the go-ahead single and pinch-hitter Kyle Tucker blasted a gapper that eluded a diving Carlos Gonzalez for a two-run triple then George Springer smacked a two-run homer, his 17th. Bregman and Altuve reached base again before Yuli Gurriel cashed in the sixth run of the inning with a base hit.
That left Brad Peacock to finish it up after Hector Rondon had worked the ninth.
Seattle fell but Oakland won so Houston regained their six-game lead in the West. The two-game series finishes Wednesday night with Charlie Morton (11-2), on seven day's rest, making the 7:40 pm Central start for the Astros against Jon Gray (8-7) and the Rockies.
The Astros family is mourning the death Monday of clubhouse man Dennis Liborio, a 30-year-fixture at the Astrodome and Minute Maid Park. A good friend to Craig Biggio, Jeff Bagwell and Nolan Ryan among others, Liborio passed away at age 63 from Alzheimer's disease.
Finally, the Zach Britton sweepstakes is over as the Baltimore closer was traded to Yankees on Monday for three prospects. He represents the last "name" reliever said to be on the trade market but a few others can be had if the price is right.
- Bob Hulsey