HOUSTON, TX – SEPTEMBER 10: Houston Astros starting pitcher Jose Urquidy (65) throws a pitch in the top of the first inning during the MLB game between the Los Angeles Angels and Houston Astros on September 10, 2022 at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Leslie Plaza Johnson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
The Astros have the best team in the American League. The Los Angeles Angels have two of the best players in baseball, men who have four MVPs between them. For one night, the two were better than the whole.
Mike Trout (2 for 4, 3 RBI) homered for the sixth straight game – an Angels record – and Shohei Ohtani pitched 5 innings of 1-hit, 1-run ball as the Angels took down the Astros 6-1 on Saturday night.
The only negative was Ohtani had to stop pitching after five with an apparent injury. Jimmy Herget and Jose Quijada finished off the night without allowing the Astros any more runs.
It was a rough night for Astros starter Jose Urquidy, who gave up six runs on 10 hits in five innings. Urquidy had been perhaps the Astros best pitcher over the last month, but the Angels beat him up.
The Angels broke things open in the top of the second, where Urquidy struggled mightily. Mike Ford doubled to right, then moved to third on an infield single by Mickey Moniak. Max Stassi walked to load the bases after a Moniak steal. Andrew Velazquez grounded out to second, but Ford scored to make it 2-1. Luis Rengifo then hit a grounder that got Moniak out at home. With two outs, it looked like Urquidy would escape. But Trout did a Trout thing, hitting a three-run blast that made it 5-1 Angels.
The Angels added a run in the top of the fifth, when Ward singled, moved to second on a groundout and scored on a Ford double.
The teams both got on the board in the first. Trout doubled, then advanced to third on an Ohtani fly out. He scored on Ward’s infield single to make it 1-0.
The Astros answered in the bottom of the inning. Jose Altuve led off with a single, then advanced to second on an Ohtani wild pitch. Yuli Gurriel singled, and Altuve scored on a fielding error by Ward, leaving the game tied at 1-1.
That would be as good as it got for the Astros.
News and notes
Rock a bye baby: Luis Garcia will get the ball for the Astros tomorrow. Garcia is 11-8 with a 3.99 ERA. He will face Tucker Davidson, who is 2-5 with a 6.42 ERA.
Home sweet home: Per Brian McTaggart of MLB.com, these were Bregman’s numbers entering Saturday night’s game: Bregman at home: .324 (71-for-219) Bregman on road: .215 (53-for-246).
Big honor: Jose Altuve is the Astros nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award.