HOUSTON (FOX 26) - FOX 26's Nate Griffin talks with Astros President Reid Ryan and General Manager Jeff Luhnow about tonight's game against the White Sox and the weekend home stand against the Boston Red Sox.
HOUSTON (AP) - May 22, 2019 The Chicago White Sox used a rare combination to beat the Houston Astros on Wednesday night.
Charlie Tilson hit a grand slam for his first career homer and the White Sox turned the only triple play in the majors this season during a 9-4 victory.
It's the first time in franchise history the White Sox have smacked a grand slam and pulled off a triple play in the same game - and only the fourth time a major league team has done it since 1979. The last club to accomplish the feat was the Detroit Tigers on Sept. 8, 2017.
"The guys today swung the bats very well," manager Rick Renteria said. "All around just a pretty good game with a few double plays and a triple play to boot."
Eloy Jiménez homered twice for Chicago, and Tilson's slam highlighted a six-run sixth inning.
A night after managing just one hit in a 5-1 loss, the White Sox got going early in this one, with Jimenéz connecting in the second inning and Jose Abreu adding a solo shot in the fourth to give them a 2-0 lead.
The Astros got a homer from Alex Bregman in a three-run fourth to go on top before Chicago's big inning.
Leury García got things started in the sixth with a single and went to second on an error by left fielder Michael Brantley. The White Sox tied it at 3 when García scored on a single by Yoán Moncada.
Abreu singled before Gerrit Cole (4-5) was chased by James McCann's RBI double that put Chicago up 4-3. He was replaced by Josh James, who walked Yonder Alonso to load the bases. There were two outs when Tilson, who has played 58 games over three big league seasons, launched a 98 mph fastball into the right field seats to extend the lead to 8-3.
"It was very special," Tilson said. "A long time coming, but couldn't have asked for a better moment to do it."
Jimenéz, who was 0 for 7 in his first two games after spending almost a month on the injured list with an ankle problem, added a second solo homer in the eighth for the rookie's second career multihomer game.
"It was a couple of tough days, especially yesterday," Jimenéz said. "It was good for me because it was against one of the best pitchers, too. He's got really good stuff."
White Sox starter Ivan Nova (3-4) allowed 10 hits but just three runs in seven-plus innings to bounce back after giving up nine runs in his previous start. He was helped by a defense that turned four double plays and ended the third inning with Chicago's first triple play since July 2016 against Atlanta.
With runners on first and second, speedy Jake Marisnick hit a grounder down the third base line to Moncada. He stepped on the bag for the first out and threw to Yolmer Sanchez at second. Sanchez relayed to first, where the ball just beat Marisnick.
"It takes a perfect alignment of the stars," Astros manager AJ Hinch said. "It was not our night."
Because he was in the perfect spot to grab Marisnick's grounder, Moncada thought the White Sox might be able to get three outs as soon as he touched third.
"Honestly, yes," he said through a translator. "I just reacted and from there the play was easy."
Houston last hit into a triple play on April 19, 2018, against the Mariners.
Cole yielded seven hits and six runs while striking out seven in five-plus innings.
"I was just off," he said. "It wasn't a good night. I wasn't synced up enough in my delivery."
Abreu, who broke up Justin Verlander's no-hit bid with a homer in the seventh inning Tuesday night, went deep with one out in the fourth to make it 2-0.
Bregman cut the lead to one on his homer with one out in the fourth. Brantley followed with a single before scoring on a double by Carlos Correa to tie it. Correa, who reached third on the throw home, evaded a tag to score on a sacrifice fly by Aledmys Diaz that put Houston on top 3-2.
Bregman's homer extended Houston's streak of games with at least one to 19, which ties the longest run in franchise history. The Astros also homered in 19 straight games in 2017.
Astros: OF George Springer took swings for the first time since leaving Sunday's game with stiffness in his lower back. Hinch said Springer is improving but still day to day. ... 2B Jose Altuve (hamstring) did extensive running and is moving closer to a rehab assignment.
THEY SAID IT
Hinch on all the double plays and the triple play the White Sox turned: "Four plus one. That's a lot of outs. They come fast ... it ends rallies. The craziest one when you have Jake up and he hits a bullet down the line. He's standing there, and that should have been a sign of bad things to come."
White Sox: RHP Lucas Giolito (5-1, 3.35 ERA) pitches the series finale Thursday. Giolito allowed three hits and one run over five innings against the Blue Jays in his last start to extend his winning streak to a career-high four games.
Astros: RHP Corbin Martin (1-0, 3.86) is scheduled to make his third career start. The rookie yielded five hits and three runs in four innings last time out against the Red Sox.
HOUSTON (AP) - May 21, 2019 As Houston's Justin Verlander flirted with a no-hitter against the Chicago White Sox, he took a moment to scan the seats behind home plate to see whether childhood idol Nolan Ryan, who threw a record seven no-hitters, was watching from his usual seat behind the plate.
After throwing two no-hitters in his career, Verlander thought to himself that it would be "pretty cool" if Ryan was there to see it if he joined him in the exclusive group of players who have tossed at least three.
Ryan was at the game, but it wasn't to be.
"I screwed it up," Verlander said with a laugh.
Verlander took a no-hitter into the seventh inning and struck out a season-high 12 to lead the Astros to a 5-1 win over the White Sox.
Verlander (8-1), who said his slider was his best pitch Tuesday night, was in control from the first pitch, allowing one hit and walking one in eight innings for his fourth straight win and the seventh in eight starts. The only hit off him came when Jose Abreu sent the first pitch of his at-bat just over the wall and out of reach of a leaping Jake Marisnick in straightaway center field with one out in the seventh to cut the lead to 5-1.
"My thought was if Jake catches this, it's over. I'm going to get it," Verlander said. "Sure enough it went over. He had a great effort at it (but) I was pretty confident that that ball was going to be a home run unless a miracle happened."
It was Abreu's sixth career off of Verlander.
"We all know the kind of pitcher that he is," Abreu said in Spanish through a translator. "He has all of my respect. He's one of the best. In that at-bat I just went in there trying to make hard contact if possible. I am happy that I was able to do it."
Yuli Gurriel hit a solo homer off Dylan Covey (0-3) in the fourth inning to give the Astros home runs in 18 straight games, tying the second-longest streak in franchise history.
Verlander, who threw no-hitters in 2007 and 2011, retired his first five batters with three strikeouts before walking Yonder Alonso with two outs in the second. But he got right back on track, sitting down Tim Anderson to end the inning.
He needed just 11 pitches to strike out the side in the third inning and fanned two in the fourth. He struck out one in the fifth and one more in the sixth after a long layoff after the Astros sent eight hitters to the plate in the bottom of their four-run fifth.
Yoán Moncada struck out to start the seventh before Abreu's homer. Verlander received a hearty ovation after ending his night with a perfect eighth before Hector Rondon took over for the ninth and finished the one-hitter.
"He was all over the strike zone, wherever he wanted to go he could go," manager AJ Hinch said. "Everything from swing-and-miss to getting into counts and really one pitch the entire night where he yanked down to Abreu and Abreu hit a ball out of the ball park. An incredible night for a guy who's fun to watch pitch."
Houston, a big league-best 33-16, won for the 12th time in 13 games overall and ninth in a row over the White Sox.
Tuesday's performance was the latest in a string of dominant starts for the 36-year-old Verlander. He's allowed just two runs and four hits while striking out 29 combined in his last three starts spanning 22 innings.
Hinch was asked where his recent work ranks in his time in Houston. Verlander is in his second full season with the Astros after a trade from Detroit late in the 2017 season.
"He's been really good so I don't know if I can put it all together in a three-outing run but I'm just glad he's ours," Hinch said. "I'm glad every five days we've got him out there pitching at an elite level. When that happens we know we can win. Where that fits in with his Astro tenure so far, I have no idea."
Covey allowed four hits, walked four and allowed four runs in four-plus innings.
Houston loaded the bases on three straight walks with no outs in the fifth, and Tony Kemp scored on a wild pitch by Aaron Bummer to make it 2-0. Alex Bregman walked before Michael Brantley scored two with a double. A single by Correa scored Bregman to extend the lead to 5-0.
Astros: Houston placed RHP Collin McHugh on the 10-day IL with discomfort in his right elbow, retroactive to Saturday. Hinch said the team doesn't think the problem is serious and expects his stay on the IL to be short. ... 2B Jose Altuve (strained left hamstring) continues to increase his activity and could begin a rehabilitation assignment in the next few days. ... OF George Springer, who left Sunday's game with stiffness in his lower back, missed his second straight game.
THEY SAID IT
White Sox manager Rick Renteria on Verlander dominating his team on Tuesday night: "Against a former Cy Young Award winner, I think they did everything they could possibly against this guy. He was that good tonight."
HOUSTON (AP) - May 20, 2019 The Houston Astros continued to pile up home runs on Monday night, even without their top slugger.
Jake Marisnick and Tyler White homered and Brad Peacock had another solid start to lead the Astros over the Chicago White Sox 3-0.
With George Springer, who leads the American League with 17 homers, out with a stiff back the Astros got pop from the bottom of the lineup to give them at least one homer in 17 straight games. They have 40 home runs in that span, and the two long balls Monday night helped them to their 11th win in 12 games.
"Jake has really taken off recently with getting good pitches to hit," manager AJ Hinch said. "We always feel good about whoever we have up there ... we certainly feel good about the middle of our order no matter who it is and the same thing for the bottom of the order."
Peacock (5-2) allowed two hits and fanned nine in five innings for his third straight win. He has allowed just two runs combined in his last three starts after giving up 11 combined in his previous three outings.
"He threw everything tonight where he wanted to, which is exciting for him and certainly productive for him," Hinch said. "Other than the last inning when he threw literally a third of his pitches to get through the fifth, he was in complete control. They made him really work at the end, which got him out of the game."
Ryan Pressly pitched a scoreless eighth to extend his MLB-record streak of appearances without allowing a run to 40, and Roberto Osuna gave up a hit in the ninth, preserving the shutout and earning his 12th save.
The Astros bounced back for their eighth win in a row against the White Sox after a 4-3 loss to the Red Sox on Sunday snapped a 10-game winning streak. Houston has the best record in the majors at 32-16 after going 14-4 this month.
The White Sox used five pitchers on a bullpen day which began with Ryan Burr (1-1), who had made 22 relief appearances in two seasons with the team, but whose last start came at Arizona State on Feb. 23, 2014. He allowed one hit and one run - which was unearned, in two innings.
Despite the loss White Sox manager Rick Renteria was pleased that his pitchers performed well enough that it didn't leave the bullpen overtaxed for the rest of the four-game series.
"A starter gives you six innings and (gives up) three runs, it's a quality start," he said. "So today our bullpen gave us nine innings of three-run ball; it's a quality start for the bullpen."
Burr walked Alex Bregman with one out in the first before a single by Michael Brantley. Right fielder Charlie Tilson made an error on Brantley's hit to allow Bregman to reach third. The Astros took a 1-0 lead when Bregman scored on a sacrifice fly by Carlos Correa.
Jace Fry took over for Burr to start the third and Marisnick sent his first pitch sailing over the seats in left field for his fifth homer to make it 2-0.
Jose Ruiz was pitching with one out in the fourth when White's first home run of the season pushed the lead to 3-0.
Astros: INF Aledmys Diaz is expected to return on Tuesday after missing the last two games with a sore left hamstring. ... 2B Jose Altuve, who has been out since May 10 with a strained left hamstring, took batting practice on the field on Monday and could be headed for a rehabilitation assignment soon. ... Springer, who left Sunday's game with stiffness in his lower back, had an MRI on Monday which was negative, and Hinch said he should return in a day or two.
White Sox: OF Eloy Jimenez was reinstated from the 10-day injured list before Monday's game, taking the roster spot of OF Nicky Delmonico, who was optioned to Triple-A Charlotte on Sunday. Jimenez has been on the injured list since April 28 after sustaining a high ankle sprain two days earlier.
HOME SWEET HOME
Houston's win on Monday gives the team a 17-4 record at home, which is the best home winning percentage in the majors.
Osuna has converted all of his save opportunities this season and has converted 24 straight since he was traded to the Astros last summer, which is tied with Brad Lidge (2005) for the longest streak in franchise history.