Evan Gattis homered and knocked in three runs Thursday night to continue his career domination of Texas Rangers starter Cole Hamels as the Houston Astros registered a 5-2 win at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas.
Gerrit Cole (7-1) lowered his ERA to 2.16 with another excellent outing. Cole gave up three hits and a run over six innings, walking three and striking out eight. In 87 2/3 innings this year, Cole has fanned 124 hitters.
Hamels (3-6) was touched for seven hits and five runs in 7 1/3 innings, walking two and whiffing five. Gattis was again a nemesis, snapping a 1-1 tie in the fourth when he launched a meaty changeup 415 feet to left field with Jose Altuve aboard to give Houston the lead for good.
Hamels faced the minimum number of hitters until Alex Bregman doubled with one out in the fourth for the Astros’ first hit. Altuve followed with a game-tying single, and one out later, Gattis cracked his 10th homer of the year and fourth in 33 career at-bats against Hamels.
Gattis did more damage in his next at-bat, upping the lead to 4-1 in the sixth inning with a two-out single to center that plated Altuve, who bunted for a hit with one out and stole second. Bregman added a run in the eighth with his seventh homer of the season, chasing Hamels.
The Rangers initiated the scoring in the first when Adrian Beltre blooped a single just in front of hard-charging right fielder George Springer, scoring Shin-Soo Choo. But Cole did a good job of damage control, as Texas had runners at the corners with none out yet didn’t score again in the frame.
Robinson Chirinos belted a two-out RBI double in the bottom of the ninth that scored Isiah Kiner-Falefa, but Ken Giles whiffed Choo on a slider to prevent the Rangers from sending the tying run to the plate.
Shortstop Carlos Correa sat out for Houston. He left the Astros’ Wednesday game due to soreness in his right side, and he is listed as day-to-day.
—Field Level Media