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Florida at Houston

W: C. Qualls (2-1) L: K. Gregg (0-1)
HR: FLA - None   HOU - None

Ensberg knocks in winning run with second-chance at-bat

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

HOUSTON -- Several of Morgan Ensberg's teammates said they knew he'd win the game for the Astros after Joe Borchard crashed into Dan Uggla, knocking the ninth-inning, bases-loaded foul pop out of the second baseman's glove.

They were right.

Given another chance, Ensberg singled to left on the next pitch, giving Houston a 4-3 victory over the Florida Marlins on Monday night.

"Oh, now it's over," Carlos Lee remembered thinking after the near miss. "They had their chance and they blew it."

Chad Qualls (2-1), who allowed no hits and struck out three in 1 2/3 scoreless innings for the win, agreed.

"I looked at everybody in the dugout and we all said, 'For sure the game is over,"' Qualls recalled. "That's just what happens in this game when you give somebody a second chance."

Ensberg wasn't as sure as his teammates, but was simply thankful for another opportunity.

"After fouling off three of them, I was very excited," he said. "You absolutely want to be in that situation - the ninth inning with a chance to win the game. It's what you play for."

Kevin Gregg (0-1) walked Mark Loretta and Lance Berkman in the ninth inning, and Lee singled to load the bases with no outs for Ensberg. Uggla backpedaled for the popup and was under it when Borchard ran into him from behind.

Uggla and Borchard weren't available for comment after the game. Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez downplayed the importance of the mistake, which was not ruled an error.

"We still would have to play the infield in, and then we face (Luke) Scott and a pinch hitter," Gonzalez said. "We would've liked to have had the opportunity, but I don't think that's the ballgame."

Gregg allowed two hits and one run with two walks in the ninth.

"It was unacceptable to walk those two guys," he said. "That's just not going to get the job done."

He also defended the play by Uggla and Borchard.

"They were trying hard," Gregg said. "They were just trying to catch the ball and ensure the out. You can't blame them for that."

Houston starter Wandy Rodriguez allowed one run and five hits in six innings, while Florida's Anibal Sanchez gave up one run, four hits and six walks in five innings.

"I felt good and had good control today," Rodriguez said.

Astros manager Phil Garner was happy with the performance of Rodriguez, who hasn't gotten a win since last July.

"I would like for him to get the win out of it, but I thought he threw the ball really well," Garner said.

Brad Ausmus' sacrifice fly put Houston ahead in the fourth, but Miguel Olivo's RBI double tied it in the fifth.

Loretta hit a two-run single in the sixth off Matt Lindstrom -- Loretta's third hit and first RBI of the season -- but Borchard and Uggla had run-scoring singles against Rick White in the seventh.


  • After the game, Houston placed RHP Jason Jennings on the disabled list with tendinitis in his throwing elbow retroactive to April 9. Matt Albers was recalled from Triple-A Round Rock and is scheduled to start Friday.
  • Craig Biggio's two hits pushed his career total to 2,942.
  • Florida's three errors this season are the fewest in the majors.
  • Following Tuesday's game against the Marlins, Houston will begin a nine-day, four-city trip.
  • The Astros will make up their game against Philadelphia, which was postponed Sunday because of bad weather, on April 23.
  • First base umpire Bruce Froemming was honored on Monday for passing umpire Bill Klem for most consecutive years of service for an active major league umpire with 37. He was presented a plaque between the fifth and sixth innings.
Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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Morgan Ensberg provides the heroics after a Marlins gaffe breathes new life into his at-bat.  (AP)
Morgan Ensberg provides the heroics after a Marlins gaffe breathes new life into his at-bat. (AP)

Players of the Game

M. Loretta
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0

J. Borchard
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0

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Florida Marlins
Hanley Ramirez, SS4020111 .371
Dan Uggla, 2B3011112 .277
Miguel Cabrera, 3B4000003 .372
Josh Willingham, LF3000100 .244
Mike Jacobs, 1B3010101 .341
Cody Ross, CF4220012 .296
Miguel Olivo, C4011022 .225
Joe Borchard, RF4121011 .270
Anibal Sanchez, P1000011 .000
    Matt Lindstrom, P0000000 .000
   a- Aaron Boone, PH1000000 .300
    Renyel Pinto, P0000000 .000
    Randy Messenger, P0000000 .000
   b- Jason Wood, PH1000010 .143
    Kevin Gregg, P0000000 .000
a-grounded out for Lindstrom in the 7th
b-struck out for Messenger in the 9th
2B - Cody Ross (4, White), Miguel Olivo (2, Rodriguez)
3B - Hanley Ramirez (2, Rodriguez)
SH - Anibal Sanchez (1)
RBI - Dan Uggla (6), Miguel Olivo (6), Joe Borchard (6)
2-OUT RBI - Dan Uggla (2)
Team LOB - 7
DP - Cabrera-Jacobs
Florida Marlins
Anibal Sanchez 5411630 4.32
Matt Lindstrom 1222210 3.60
Renyel Pinto 0.2000000 3.86
Randy Messenger 1.1000020 0.00
Kevin Gregg (L,0-1)0211200 2.84
IBB - Berkman by Matt Lindstrom
Pitches-Strikes - Anibal Sanchez 106-54, Matt Lindstrom 28-15, Renyel Pinto 4-2, Randy Messenger 16-10, Kevin Gregg 26-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Anibal Sanchez 2-9, Matt Lindstrom 2-0
Batters Faced - Anibal Sanchez 24, Matt Lindstrom 7, Renyel Pinto 2, Randy Messenger 4, Kevin Gregg 4
Houston Astros
Craig Biggio, 2B5020010 .240
    Adam Everett, SS0000000 .267
Mark Loretta, SS-2B4122101 .250
Lance Berkman, 1B2010312 .206
Carlos Lee, LF5010005 .302
Morgan Ensberg, 3B2111300 .289
Luke Scott, RF3000114 .250
Chris Burke, CF4110012 .211
    Chad Qualls, P0000000 .000
Brad Ausmus, C2001111 .273
Wandy Rodriguez, P2000013 .000
   a- Orlando Palmeiro, PH0100100 .250
    Rick White, P0000000 .000
    Trever Miller, P0000000 .000
    Jason Lane, CF1000000 .167
a-walked for Rodriguez in the 6th
SF - Brad Ausmus (1)
RBI - Mark Loretta 2 (2), Morgan Ensberg (5), Brad Ausmus (1)
2-OUT RBI - Mark Loretta 2 (2)
SB - Lance Berkman (1, 2nd base off Sanchez/Olivo), Chris Burke (4, 2nd base off Lindstrom/Olivo)
Team LOB - 10
Outfield Assists - Chris Burke 1
DP - Ensberg-Biggio-Berkman, Ensberg-Biggio-Berkman
Houston Astros
Wandy Rodriguez 6511350 2.77
Rick White (BS,1) 1.1322100 2.35
Trever Miller0100000 10.80
Chad Qualls (W,2-1) 1.2000030 2.84
Pitches-Strikes - Wandy Rodriguez 93-58, Rick White 35-20, Trever Miller 2-2, Chad Qualls 23-16
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Wandy Rodriguez 8-2, Rick White 2-2, Chad Qualls 2-0
Batters Faced - Wandy Rodriguez 23, Rick White 8, Trever Miller 1, Chad Qualls 5
Game Information
Attendance - 30665
Game Time - 3:18
Temperature - 68
Umpires - Home - Mark Wegner, First Base - Bruce Froemming, Second Base - Brian Runge, Third Base - Mike Winters