Astros' stars, Correa's circus catch clip O's

May 28th, 2017

HOUSTON -- With two swift runs, the Astros handed ace a lead they would never give up before the second inning even began.
Prior to 's mammoth two-run homer in the fourth, the Astros scored their first two batters, Springer and , quickly pacing Houston to a 5-2 win Saturday night over the Orioles.
"The entire building feels good," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. "If you like the Astros, you like the Astros even better with a lead and with Keuchel pitching. It means something to our dugout and puts a little pressure on the other dugout. Dallas has the ability to command the game, especially when we have the lead."
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The Astros' offense overpowered the Orioles with 11 hits, and did so behind Keuchel in his first start since May 16. After being activated from the disabled list for a pinched nerve in his neck, Keuchel (8-0) tossed six innings of one-run baseball, aided by eight strikeouts.
"[Keuchel] has ways to answer every challenge, and that's what makes him special," Hinch said.

Springer's home run was projected to travel 447 feet, according to Statcast™, and was insurance for the Astros -- who have an MLB-best 34 wins through 50 games. Since 2000, 10 teams have won at least 34 of their first 50 games, with the Cubs starting 35-15 last year en route to a World Series championship.
The Orioles have lost six in a row for the first time since 2015.
"We just haven't been doing much offensively," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "It's a real tribute to their pitchers and us not swinging the bat real well right now."
Houston's defense also played a part in extending Baltimore's slide, with shortstop avoiding teammates in shallow center field to haul in an over-the-shoulder catch for the first out of the eighth inning.

Springer's 10th dinger: After an single, Springer crushed his home run to left-center field. According to Statcast™, Springer's long ball left the bat at 109.3 mph and was the second longest homer he's hit this season, trailing a 454-footer on April 6.

"Just trying to hit the ball hard," Springer said. "There's an RBI out there and that was a big spot in the game. I was just trying to get a spot I can hit and didn't want to miss it."
Quick work: To begin the bottom of the first inning, Springer hit a single against lefty . Altuve then shot a double over center fielder Joey Rickard, who replaced (sore ankle) in the starting lineup. Springer made an acrobatic dive to plate the Astros' first run, then Altuve scored on a Correa base hit, putting Houston up 2-0 before its fourth batter reached the batter's box.

Chris Davis' seventh-inning leadoff triple was his first three-bagger since Sept. 21, 2013 at Tampa Bay.

After the Astros' two quick runs in the first inning, Correa was moved to second base on a single by . Correa, taking a lengthy lead, was initially called safe on a 1-6 pickoff before the umpires overturned the call on the Orioles' challenge.

Orioles: makes his third start of the season, and the right-hander went at least six innings in his first two. Asher takes the spot in the rotation after was moved to the bullpen. Sunday's 2:10 p.m. ET game concludes the three-game series.
Astros:, who is riding a 22-inning scoreless streak, takes the mound at 1:10 CT Sunday. He is coming off a five-inning start in which he allowed only one hit vs. Detroit. The right-hander is set to make his 11th start of the season, with the Astros winning eight of his first 10 starts. McCullers is 2-0 in his career against Baltimore.
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