EditorsNote: Deleted duplicate strikeout info in 9th graf
Paul Goldschmidt homered for a fifth consecutive game, his three-run blast in the eighth inning lifting the St. Louis Cardinals to a 5-3 victory over the visiting Houston Astros on Friday.
The Cardinals won their sixth consecutive game and claimed the opener of a three-game interleague series by parlaying two late-inning homers into four runs against the Houston bullpen.
Matt Wieters belted a game-tying home run off Astros right-hander Will Harris, his ninth of the year, an inning before Goldschmidt took right-hander Ryan Pressly (2-2) out to center field for his 23rd homer.
Pressly, who entered with a 3-2 lead, failed to retire any of the three batters he faced.
St. Louis’ Carlos Martinez worked around a single in the ninth to earn his 10th save.
Michael Brantley drove in all three runs for Houston. His two-run home run to right-center field plated Alex Bregman and broke the scoreless tie in the fourth inning. Bregman had drawn a one-out walk against Cardinals right-hander Jack Flaherty.
Brantley worked a two-out, bases-loaded walk against Cardinals left-hander Andrew Miller (4-4) to nudge Houston ahead again in the top of the eighth. Miller recovered to strike out Carlos Correa, back in the Astros’ lineup following a 50-game absence, setting the stage for the Goldschmidt heroics.
Flaherty, who retired the final seven batters he faced, allowed two runs on three hits and one walk with nine strikeouts over six innings.
Rookie right-hander Jose Urquidy delivered a second consecutive strong start for the Astros. He gave up one run on four hits, all singles, and two walks with six strikeouts over six innings.
St. Louis scratched across a run in the bottom of the fourth, posting three hits in the frame, capped by an RBI single by Kolten Wong that plated Goldschmidt and sliced the deficit to 2-1.
—Field Level Media