Astros hit season-high 5 HRs; Cole K's 12 in win

Gattis, White each homer twice to increase AL West lead to 2 games

August 15th, 2018

HOUSTON -- The Astros took out a week's worth of offensive frustration against the Rockies on Wednesday, slamming a season-high five home runs, including two each by designated hitter Evan Gattis and first baseman , to end their nine-game home losing streak with a resounding 12-1 win at Minute Maid Park.

In snapping a five-game losing streak, the Astros gained a game on the second-place A's, who lost to the Mariners earlier Wednesday and fell two games behind Houston. The Astros and A's open a three-game series Friday at Oakland Coliseum.

"We needed to have a little fun, and nights like this produce that," said Astros manager AJ Hinch, whose team had nine extra-base hits.

The Astros, who had scored eight runs combined in their previous four games, took a 3-0 lead in the first inning against Rockies starter when bounced a three-run double down the left-field line. Yuli Gurriel hit a two-run homer in the second for a 6-0 lead.

"The first inning everyone is wondering what's going to show up and when we were going to break out," Hinch said. "It wasn't a question of if, it was kind of when. I'm glad it was Carlos because he puts a lot of pressure on himself, especially with some guys out, to be the guy in the middle of the order and do everything. It started with a huge icebreaker to get the three runs in."

Correa wows himself with behind-the-back play

It was the first extra-base hit for Correa since June 22, which was shortly before he would be placed on the disabled list for six weeks with a sore lower back.

"It was huge," said Correa, who was 1-for-15 in his first four games off the disabled list prior to Wednesday. "For me, it was a relief."

Gattis broke an 0-for-20 slump with a towering solo homer to left field in the third for a 7-0 lead, and White chased Anderson from the game with a two-run homer in the fifth. Gattis (3-for-4) hit a solo homer to right field off reliever later in the inning for a 10-1 lead. White added a solo homer in the seventh and is hitting .347 with seven homers and 15 RBIs in his last 17 games.

"There's constant changes in baseball with swings and stuff," White said. "It's trying to get the most consistent swing possible and just trying to be the same player every day and take the same swings and not try to press too much."

Astros starter (11-5) was the beneficiary of the offensive outburst and snapped his personal three-game losing streak with his first win since July 14. Cole struck out 12 and didn't walk anyone while allowing one run and five hits in six innings.

"We've been grinding pretty hard," Cole said. "It's no secret it's been not the easiest thing to deal with. The fact that the pitching and the defense and the offense showed up and had a complete game is encouraging. Hopefully, we can build on that."

Altuve takes significant step toward returning


Astros starters have reached double-digit strikeouts in 25 games this season, which is a franchise record. The 1968 Astros had 24 double-digit strikeout games. Cole's 219 strikeouts are tied with Chris Sale for the AL lead, and he's the first Astros pitcher since Nolan Ryan in 1988 to strike out at least 219 batters in a season.


"I think I've faced him 30 times, and I don't think I've struck him out and I'm pretty sure he hits like .500 off me. He grew up in my hometown and he's just a tremendous player. I make good pitches to him and he hits good pitches, and then I make bad pitches to him and he hits them, too. I don't think I struck him out. He just swung and missed." -- Cole, on showing emotion after striking out to end the sixth. Arenado came in batting .429 off Cole, with no strikeouts.


Gattis' second home run was reviewed by umpiring crew chief Fieldin Culbreth to determine if there was fan interference. Rockies right-fielder reached high above the wall to try to catch the ball, but couldn't corral it amid the outstretched arms of a few fans. The home run call was confirmed after replay.


The Astros will welcome All-Star outfielder back from a 12-day stint on the disabled list for Friday's 9:05 p.m. CT series opener in Oakland against the A's, who trail Houston in the American League West by two games. Charlie Morton (12-3, 2.88 ERA) will start for the Astros against (4-2, 2.48).