Astros hit five home runs in 9-1 rout of Angels

Martin Maldonado hit a homer twice, and Jose Altuve, Kyle Tucker and Chas McCormick each added a home run as the Houston Astros built a big lead early and didn’t let up in a 9-1 win over the Angels on Saturday.

The Astros followed up their 8-1 win on Friday in the series opener with another one-sided win to extend their winning streak to five games.

Houston starter Jose Urquidy (7-3) delivered two hits and a run with eight strikeouts in six innings to take the team’s starters to 7-0 in their last nine games. This was the fifth straight game in which the Astros did not give up more than one run.

The Astros were already 3-0 up when Maldonado, who had just one goal in his previous four games, knocked out Patrick Sandoval (3-3) to start the second inning.

Houston led by four in the sixth when Maldonado hit Andrew Wantz’s first throw over the wall in direct midfield for a 6-1. It was the fourth multihomer game of Maldonado’s career and his first since 2019.

Four pitches later, Altuve Houston was giving Houston back-to-back homers when he hit a field shot into the right field seats.

Aaron Loup took over for Wantz to start the seventh and was greeted with Tucker’s home run to right field. There were two outs as McCormick hit the second straight game with his drive that extended the lead to 9-1.

Taylor Ward hit a home run in the third solo for the Angels, who continue to struggle offensively. Mike Trout went 0-4 with four strikeouts and is 0-7 with seven strikeouts in the series.

Sandoval gave up eight hits and five runs while tied for a season-high with nine strikeouts in five innings for his second straight loss.

Yordan Alvarez, who was named Saturday’s AL Player of the Month, returned after missing two games on Wednesday following a nasty outfield clash with Jeremy Pena. He went 0 for 4 with a walk.

Tucker scored with a single for Altuve and gave Houston a 1-0 lead in the first game. Yuli Gurriel went to load the bases before a single from Jake Meyers scored twice to make it 3-0.

Maldonado opened the second Houston with his shot at the train tracks on the left field wall.

Altuve, who had three hits, doubled and stole third base with an inning out. He scored on Alex Bregman’s double single to make it 5-0.

https://www.latimes.com/sports/angels/story/2022-07-02/astros-hit-five-homers-in-9-1-rout-of-angels Astros hit five home runs in 9-1 rout of Angels

Emma Bowman

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