Gerrit Cole produced another strong pitching performance while rookie Yordan Alvarez notched his seventh multi-RBI game as the Houston Astros completed a three-game series sweep of the Seattle Mariners with a 6-1 victory Sunday at Minute Maid Park.
Cole (8-5) posted his ninth double-digit strikeout game and surrendered five hits and one walk over seven innings. The Mariners mustered just one extra-base hit off Cole, with shortstop J.P. Crawford driving a 95.7 mph fastball into the Houston bullpen in right-center field for a solo home run with one out in the first inning. It was Crawford’s third homer this season.
Cole rebounded to retire the Mariners in order in the second, third and seventh innings and struck out the side while allowing a pair of singles in the fourth. His four-seam fastball was exceptional, as Cole averaged 97.2 miles per hour on 54 four-seamers, recording 10 called strikes. Cole finished with 10 strikeouts and threw 109 pitches with 74 strikes.
The Astros rallied quickly after Cole allowed the Crawford dinger, with George Springer, Jose Altuve and Alex Bregman reaching in succession ahead of Alvarez to open the first. Alvarez followed with a scorching two-run double to right field off Seattle left-hander Marco Gonzalez (9-7), producing an exit velocity of 110.3 miles per hour while plating Springer and Altuve.
With one out in the third, Alvarez blistered another line drive off Gonzalez, this time driving home Bregman with a single that registered 108.4 miles per hour off the bat. Bregman was on third following his one-out triple to left-center, and the Alvarez run-scoring hit upped the lead to 3-1.
Before the Astros tacked on three runs in the eighth, the Mariners mustered an opportunity to rally in the top of that frame when Mallex Smith (infield single) and Crawford (walk) reached in succession with two outs off right-hander Collin McHugh. Astros right-hander Ryan Pressly emerged from the pen and, after falling behind 2-0 to Domingo Santana, rallied for a strikeout.
Jake Marisnick delivered a two-run single in the bottom of the eighth and later scored with Altuve added an RBI single, with all the damage coming against Seattle reliever Mike Wright.
Houston improved to 9-1 against the Mariners this season.
—Field Level Media