Never count the Houston Astros out. It’s a lesson that the Atlanta Braves learned the hard way on Sunday night with the Astros responding in a big way after being put behind the eight-ball and were able to bring the series back to Minute Maid with a 9-5 win.
How It Happened
After Carlos Correa grounded into a double play to end the top of the first inning, things went sideways in the bottom frame for Framber Valdez, who loaded the bases with two outs and Adam Duvall took the first pitch he saw out to right field for a grand slam to take a sizeable lead.
The Astros answered the bell in the second inning with an RBI double from Alex Bregman to center field, scoring Yuli Gurriel. Martin Maldonado followed up with a sac fly that scored Kyle Tucker, making it a 4-2 ballgame.
The Astros continued to chip away at the lead in the third with an RBI double from Carlos Correa, scoring Jose Altuve. Gurriel tied things up later in the inning with a groundout that got Michael Brantley across home plate.
The Braves responded though in the bottom of the third with Freddie Freeman blasting one out of the ballpark to take a 5-4 lead. However, the Astros tied it right back up off of a two-out, bases-loaded walk. Marwin Gonzalez came up to the plate to pinch-hit for Jose Urquidy and he came up big with a two-run single to take the lead.
Maldonado gave Houston a little more insurance in the seventh with an RBI single to left field, scoring Tucker. Correa came up big once again in the eighth to help secure the victory with an RBI single of his own to bring Altuve home.
Big Number: 12
It took long enough, but the Astros’ bats finally came alive once again with nine runs off of 12 hits and was a critical part of the victory.
Player of the Game: Martin Maldonado
The Astros got a lot of help from different people and Maldonado was a huge part of the team’s victory. He may have only recorded one hit, but he was able to be at the plate at the right time and scratch three runs across.
Next Up: Game Six Tuesday; First Pitch at 7:09