If there is one adjective that can describe how games have gone for the Houston Astros in recent days, it is frustrating. All of the Astros' previous seven games, five of them have been decided by two or less runs; in those same six games, the Astros have posted a three and four record, being shut out twice. On the surface, this points to a lack of offensive production; the Astros scored 24 runs in the games that they won, eight in the games that they lost. What makes this stretch frustrating is that with the exception of the two shutouts, the Astros have played very well. In particular, the starting rotation has excelled; Astros starting pitcher have pitched 49.2 Innings while allowing only 14 runs during this stretch. Unfortunately, those same starters have earned only three wins. Unfortunately, the trend continued in game one of a four game series against the Padres as Wandy Rodriguez found himself winless for the second time in as many starts.
The Astros got off to a hot start against Padres' starter Ross Ohlendorf. Astros 2B Brian Bixler, who is filling in for the ailing Jose Altuve, hit the second pitch Ohlendorf threw into the right field bleachers to give the Astros an early one to nothing lead. After the club leader in homeruns in the person of SS Jed Lowrie was retired, Astros 1B Carlos Lee hit his fifth homerun of the season into the left field seats to give the Astros a two to nothing lead. Unfortunately, Ohlendorf was not the only starter to struggle out of gate during this game. After being handed a two run lead going into the second inning, Astros starter Wandy Rodriguez surrendered four runs to the second to worst offense in the National League. Luckily for Wandy, the Astros did not go quietly into the night. The Astros slowly but surely began to chip away at the Padres lead with a run in the second and two in the fourth. In the bottom of the fifth, Jed Lowrie doubled in the go ahead run to take a six to five lead. The Padres would retake the lead on a two run homerun from 1B Jesus Guzman, but Astros C Jason Castro retied the game with a solo shot in the bottom half of the inning.The Astros' bullpen maintained the tie in the ninth, but the offense came up short and the game went into extras. In the tenth, Padres' LF Carlos Quentin doubled in the go ahead run. The Astros were unable to match the feat Padres' closer Huston Street notched his eleventh save of the year.
Astros MVP of the game: Brian Bixler, 2-5, 3 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB
Next game: 6/26 7:05 PM CST v. San Diego Padres, Kip Wells (0-0, 0.00) v. Jordan Lyles (1-4, 5.04)
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