SEATTLE (AP) — Ryan Pressly got Luis Torrens to ground into a game-ending double play with the bases loaded in the ninth inning, preserving the Houston Astros’ 2-1 win over the Seattle Mariners on Sunday.
Trying for its first home sweep of the Astros, Seattle took two of three from the AL West leader after outscoring them 12-1 Friday and Saturday.
“We lost one game in the standings and scored three runs the whole series, so it’s very fortunate for us that we get out here with a win,” Astros manager Dusty Baker said.
Yordan Álvarez broke an eighth-inning tie with a two-out bases-loaded single off Paul Sewald, who had relieved Marco Gonzales (3-5).
Pressly walked J.P. Crawford leading off the ninth, threw a called third strike past Eugenio Suárez and walked Mike Ford, loading the bases. Torrens grounded Pressly’s third straight slider to third baseman Alex Bregman, starting a 5-4-3 double play and giving Pressly his eighth save in 10 chances.
“I was thinking about closers, actually the best I’ve ever had: I was thinking about Rob Beck,” Baker said. “And that was kind of like vintage Rod Beck. And I was like, ‘Come on, Big Rod!′ He would always get out of it.”
Jeremy Peña hit a second-inning home run, giving Houston its first lead of the series. Ty France had a tying single in the sixth.
Luis Garcia retired his first 13 batters before walking Suárez and didn’t allow a hit until Torrens singled leading off the sixth. Torrens advanced on Taylor Trammell’s sacrifice and scored on a single by France, who has 10 RBIs in a career-high 11-game hitting streak.
Rafael Montero (2-0) relieved Gonzales with two on and no outs in the seventh. After Frazier sacrificed, Montero struck out Ford and Torrens.
“He was big,” Garcia said of his teammate, a former Mariner. “I was kind of mad, but you know, it happens.”
Garcia gave up one run and four hits in six innings with six strikeouts and a walk. Gonzales matched him with a gritty performance of his own, allowing two runs and five hits in 7 1/3 innings.
“He was at the top of his game today,” Mariners manager Scott Servais said. “It doesn’t get much better than what he did to take us this deep into the ballgame. It’s one of those games where it’s going to come down to creating chaos and traffic out there and then getting the big hit. … We just didn’t get the big hit.”
Peña has hit safely in 18 of his last 20 games. He has eight home runs.
Mariners: DH Kyle Lewis was scratched from the lineup. Lewis is returning from knee surgery and this would have been the first time he’d played in three straight games since returning. “We’ve got to play the long game here,” manager Scott Servais said. “We really want to have him available for the remainder of the season.”
Astros: RF Kyle Tucker sat out Sunday’s game after undergoing an MRI on his injured left foot. Manager Dusty Baker said there’s some inflammation in the foot and Tucker would be day to day going forward. Tucker came out of Saturday’s 6-0 loss to the Mariners in the sixth inning due to discomfort. Baker said Tucker wasn’t sure how he injured his foot, but wanted to play Sunday. Baker overruled him because in his experience foot injuries can lead to other injuries as players compensate. … OF Jake Meyers, coming off offseason left shoulder surgery, played center field for the first time since the operation during an extended spring training game Saturday at West Palm Beach, Florida.
Astros: LHP Framber Valdez (4-2, 2.83 ERA) goes for his fourth consecutive win and seventh straight quality start when Houston travels to Oakland on Monday.
Mariners: Rookie RHP George Kirby (0-1, 4.50) takes the mound when Seattle opens a three-game series at Baltimore on Tuesday. Kirby struck out a career-high nine over five innings in a no decision against Oakland on May 24.
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