HOUSTON (AP) — Gerrit Cole’s only major miscue against San Francisco came on a pitch to Brandon Crawford that likely will give his brother-in-law bragging rights at family gatherings for years to come.
Cole struck out eight over six innings to lead the Houston Astros over the San Francisco Giants 11-2 Tuesday.
Both of the runs off Cole (5-1) scored on a fifth-inning home run by Crawford, whose sister Amy is married to Cole.
Crawford entered 4 for 18 off the right-hander. He singled in the second inning to extend his hitting streak to nine games, then got his first extra-base hit against his in-law with the home run that cut the lead to 5-2.
The rest of the game was all Astros, with Tony Kemp leading the way with two hits and a career-high five RBIs in the first meeting between these teams since 2015. Alex Bregman and Jose Altuve added two RBIs apiece as Houston won for the fifth time in six games.
Cole improved to 3-0 in his last five starts, allowing two hits to Giants who aren’t part of his family and walking three. He leads the American League with 101 strikeouts.
Houston jumped on left-hander Andrew Suarez (1-4), who was making his sixth major league start, for five runs and seven hits in four innings. Evan Gattis and Max Stassi hit consecutive doubles to start Houston’s third and make it 1-0. Stassi advanced to third on a sacrifice by Tony Kemp before scoring on a single by George Springer. Bregman followed with a double for a 3-0 lead.
Kemp hit a two-runs single in the fourth.
Houston tacked on four runs in the sixth inning, with two coming on a single by Altuve, and added two more in the seventh on a single by Kemp, who was called up Triple-A Fresno on Wednesday.
Giants: LHP Madison Bumgarner, on the DL since spring training with a broken pinkie on his throwing hand, threw 30 pitches on Tuesday in his first action against hitters since he was injured. Manager Bruce Bochy said Bumgarner could begin a rehabilitation assignment at Triple-A Sacramento on Saturday. … Reliever Mark Melancon, who has missed all season with a strained right elbow, threw six pitches in the first game of a rehabilitation assignment with Sacramento on Monday. Bochy said he could pitch again as soon as Wednesday since he threw so few pitches on Monday. … Reliever Jose Valdez was placed on the 10-day DL retroactive to Saturday with inflammation in his right elbow and left-hander Josh Osich was recalled from Sacramento to take his spot on the roster.
Houston RHP Justin Verlander opposes San Francisco RHP Jeff Samardzija in the conclusion of this two-game series on Wednesday. Verlander lowered his ERA to an MLB-leading 1.05 by allowing five hits in a complete game shutout of the Angels in his last start. Samardzija threw a season-high 6 2/3 innings in his last start but received a no-decision in the Giants’ 12-inning loss to Colorado his last time out.
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