Astros Blank Mariners 13-0
Led by Evan Gattis’ career-high four hits, and five no-hit innings from rookie Lance McCullers, the Houston Astros pounded the Seattle Mariners 13-0 Sunday at Minute Maid Park to win the series two games to one.
McCullers was lifted after five innings with the no-no intact, but his pitch count had reached 90 pitches thanks in most part to issuing a career-high four base on balls. He also recorded a season-low four strikeouts. McCullers improved his record to 3-1 in only his sixth big league start.
"I had to battle from the first pitch on," McCullers said. "I knew that I didn't have the same stuff that I usually did, but thankfully I had good defense behind me today and [catcher] Hank [Conger] helped me battle through."
Relievers Tony Sipp and Joe Thaacher gave up the only Mariners hits of the afternoon in the sixth and seventh innings respectively.
Will Harris and Josh Field each pitched a perfect inning to complete the shut out. It was the fifth shutout performance of the season for the Astros’ pitching staff.
Gattis had been struggling at the plate recently, going 1-for-7 in the first two games of the Seattle series and a combined 5 for his last 32 prior to producing the second four-hit game of his career on Sunday.
"It's good to see a first-pitch ball," Gattis said. "For whatever reason. First at-bat, see a fastball, ball. Then, after that, I just got good pitches to hit."
Luis Valbuena and Marwin Gonzales hit homers for the Astros.
Mariners starter Roenis Elias (3-4) lasted a season-low 3.1 innings giving up eight runs, seven earned, on seven hits and four walks and a hit batter.
The Astros will begin a two-game home series with the Colorado Rockies on Monday before the series shifts to Colorado for two games. The Astros are expected to send ace Dallas Keuchel (7-2, 1.90 ERA) to the mound while Colorado is expected to send Monterey Plainsman and former Texas Tech hurler Chad Bettis (2-1, 3.05) to the hill.
You can hear Monday’s game on Sports Radio 1340 The Fan, beginning with “Rocket’s Launch” at 6:45 p.m. First pitch is slated for 7:10 p.m.