The Astros supplied some early run support for Jarred Cosart today and held on for a 6-5 win over the Chicago White Sox. Cosart struggled a bit with his command and was forced from the game after throwing over 100 pitches in five innings.
Cosart had trouble throwing his curveball for strikes. Home plate umpire Ted Barrett’s tiny strike zone didn’t help. But a big first inning by the Astros offense did.
Jose Altuve hit the first pitch from Hector Noesi for a single to leftfield. George Springer launched Noesi’s second offering over the head of centerfielder Alejandro De Aza for a triple and, just like that, the Astros were up 1-0. After a walk to Dexter Fowler, Jason Castro belted a homerun into the rightfield bleachers to make it 4-0. Two great defensive plays by the White Sox saved Noesi from what could have been an even bigger inning.
Chicago got back in the game in the second inning, plating a pair of runs with the help of three walks and a wild pitch from Cosart. The Sox scored again in the third to make it 4-3. Cosart’s pitch total was already at 65.
A Dexter Fowler homer to the Crawford Boxes in the fifth inning extended the Astros lead to 5-3. Josh Fields took over on the mound in the sixth and, much to my surprise, was able to keep Chicago off the scoreboard. George Springer manufactured the Astros’ sixth run of the day after Tony Sipp pitched a perfect seventh.
The newest member of the Astros came out of the bullpen for the eighth, and that’s when things got a little dicey. Right-hander Kyle Farnsworth walked the first batter he faced. A double, sacrifice fly, walk, and RBI single later, Farnsworth gave way to Darin Downs. The lefty was able to stop the bleeding and the Astros went to the ninth clinging to the smallest of leads.
Houston loaded the bases with one out but was unable to push any runs across. But that didn’t faze Chad Qualls. The Astros newly appointed closer set the Sox down in order (including a strikeout of the red-hot Adam Dunn) to earn his third save of the year.
Altuve, Springer, and Alex Presley had two hits apiece in the 11-hit attack. Fowler had three. The club has now totaled exactly eleven hits in six of its last seven games. Are we beginning to see the offensive explosion we’ve been waiting for?