Keuchel, Astros beat Rangers 4-2 to tighten AL West race

Astros second baseman Jose Altuve is in Saturday’s lineup, leading off, a day after he was hurt in a collision with rookie shortstop Carlos Correa in Houston’s 6-2 loss Friday night against the Texas Rangers. They will travel up to Seattle to face the Mariners for a three-game series before finishing their regular season slate against the Diamondbacks. “It just feels like I’m at home-home here”. They began the day a half-game ahead of the Los Angeles Angels, and stayed 1 1/2 games in front of Minnesota.


“We pickup ways to do better”, Astros professional A.J. It’s about competing. These guys, they’ve never taken that approach.

Altuve and Correa were tracking a popup by Elvis Andrus with two outs in the seventh inning. The homers hit by Correa came on poorly executed off-speed pitches, and the homer Altuve hit to start the third was on a slider down the middle. He grimaced as he remained on the field for a couple of minutes while trainers attended to him before eventually walking off the field. But that was fun and that’s what you play for right there, to go out and string those innings together.

The Rangers improved to 16-7 this month while Houston fell to 7-15.

It was only 11 days ago, though, that the Rangers handed Keuchel the worst start of his career, touching him up for 11 hits and nine earned runs in just 4 2/3 innings of a 14-3 win at Globe Life Park. He has won his last three starts and needs four innings to pass 200 innings for the season.

“It’s been on and off”, Kazmir said.

Chris Carter would add a solo home run for insurance – which was ultimately needed after Rougned Odor tripled off Oliver Perez to lead off the top of the eighth inning and later scored on a ground out. Gregerson was replaced by Will Harris after he plunked Adrian Beltre to leave runners at first and second.

The Buccaneers (1-2) went up 9-7 on a touchdown reception by Charles Sims in the second quarter that came after an interception by Mallett, but didn’t score again.

“This is pennant race baseball, and it’s a big boy business”, Hinch said. “Execution was a little tough, that comes from getting hit in the hand”. Whether we do that or not will be sorted out over the next week.

CUBS 4, PIRATES 0 Jake Arrieta pitched seven dominant innings and also homered in his major league-best 21st victory, and host Chicago stopped Pittsburgh’s eight-game win streak. Altuve passed concussion tests after the series opener and, despite a few residual soreness from the impact, was deemed fit to play on Saturday. Gomez could be used during the Rangers series as a pinch runner or defensive replacement.

The Astros swatted six homers.

“Keuchel is not easy to hit”, Choo said.

“I think I was actually the exact same”, Keuchel said. The Dodgers are working on winning their division, and every other NL team has been eliminated from wild card contention.

“As a kid who grew up in this city…”

“Full of energy and full of life”, he said.


So I ask you, Houston fans.

Rangers beat Astros 6-2 to push AL West lead to 4½ games