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Washington at Houston

W: A. Arias (2-0) L: J. Lannan (6-6)
HR: WAS - None   HOU - L. Berkman (19)

Astros rally past Nationals to win regularly scheduled game

CBSSports.com wire reports

HOUSTON -- It took the Houston Astros only seven minutes to lose a game that took over two months to complete.

They put that all behind them nine innings later with a victory against the Washington Nationals.

"Nice win," manager Cecil Cooper said, "particularly after kind of a heartbreaking loss there at the beginning."

Lance Berkman's three-run homer was one of 16 hits used by the Astros in a 9-4 victory Thursday night. The win came a few hours after the Astros lost the completion of a suspended game from May, 11-10 in 11 innings -- a result that gave former Nationals reliever Joel Hanrahan the victory.

"There wasn't a whole lot of buildup," Berkman said. "We moved on and got ready for the regular game. It was like it never even happened."

  Tejada error gives Nats victory in suspended game

In the regularly scheduled game, All-Star Hunter Pence and Jeff Keppinger drove in two runs each for the Astros, who used a four-run sixth inning to overcome a two-run deficit and take the lead.

Keppinger's triple scored Geoff Blum and Ivan Rodriguez, tying it at 4 and chasing Nationals starter John Lannan (6-6).

He was replaced by Jason Bergmann, who struck out Jason Michaels. Michael Bourn gave Houston the lead with his run-scoring triple that bounced off the wall in left field, and Miguel Tejada added an RBI single.

Berkman's 18th home run was a two-out shot to the Crawford Boxes in left field in the eighth inning.

Cooper thought his team might have took a while to get going in the regular game because it was down about losing the suspended game. Berkman disagreed.

"The continuation didn't last long enough for it to be disappointing," he said. "I went out there and moved some dirt around and then walked off the field. That was pretty much it, so it wasn't really that disappointing."

The Nationals, perhaps propelled by their earlier win, took a 4-2 at the end of three after Josh Bard drove in two runs and Ryan Zimmerman and Adam Dunn each had an RBI.

"I felt once we won the first one, we had some momentum, things were all on our side," Nationals manager Manny Acta said. "But we just couldn't keep adding on after we got that lead."

Lannan allowed 11 hits with five runs in five-plus innings.

Astros starter Russ Ortiz gave up six hits and four runs with two walks in three innings.

Afterward, unhappy with being taken out of the game, he went on an almost seven-minute long tirade voicing his frustration.

"It became apparent to me from the very beginning of the season that I wasn't going to be given much of a chance or room for error and today is another example of that," he said. "The last two months, I don't think I've really struggled pitching. I struggled today and I'm out after three innings and we come back and win. I don't understand it and I haven't been given a real good reason why I was taken [out]."

Ortiz, who has alternated between the rotation and the bullpen this season, went on to say that Cooper has told him doesn't like a starting pitcher who walks as many people and throws as many pitches as he does.

Cooper discussed his reasoning for taking Ortiz out before the pitcher spoke.

"It looked like things were going to go the other way on us and Russ was struggling a little bit in the zone," he said. "So just sometimes you've got to make a call. It might not have been the popular one, but you've still got to make what you think is the right one."

Alberto Arias (2-0) pitched a scoreless fifth and sixth for the victory.

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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Jeff Keppinger belts a game-tying two-run triple in the sixth inning and scores moments later.  (AP)
Jeff Keppinger belts a game-tying two-run triple in the sixth inning and scores moments later. (AP)

Players of the Game

L. Berkman
AB 4
R 3
H 2
HR 1

R. Zimmerman
AB 5
R 2
H 2
HR 0

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Washington Nationals
Nyjer Morgan, CF5000024 .277
Nick Johnson, 1B4220111 .299
Ryan Zimmerman, 3B5221002 .292
Adam Dunn, LF4011012 .259
Josh Willingham, RF3010011 .294
Cristian Guzman, SS4000015 .306
    Mike MacDougal, P0000000 .000
Josh Bard, C3012100 .281
Anderson Hernandez, 2B3010111 .256
John Lannan, P1010000 .133
    Jason Bergmann, P0000000 .000
    Sean Burnett, P0000000 .000
    Alberto Gonzalez, SS0000100 .306
2B - Adam Dunn (14, Ortiz), Josh Willingham (14, Arias), John Lannan (1, Ortiz)
SH - John Lannan 2 (4)
RBI - Ryan Zimmerman (52), Adam Dunn (60), Josh Bard 2 (17)
2-OUT RBI - Josh Bard 2 (4)
Team LOB - 8
Washington Nationals
John Lannan (L,6-6) 51155120 3.70
Jason Bergmann 0.1211010 6.89
Sean Burnett 1.2000020 2.84
Mike MacDougal 1333101 4.71
HBP - Tejada (by Mike MacDougal)
Pitches-Strikes - John Lannan 96-64, Jason Bergmann 9-7, Sean Burnett 19-12, Mike MacDougal 24-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - John Lannan 9-3, Sean Burnett 3-0, Mike MacDougal 2-1
Batters Faced - John Lannan 26, Jason Bergmann 3, Sean Burnett 5, Mike MacDougal 8
Houston Astros
Michael Bourn, CF5221012 .288
Miguel Tejada, SS4111002 .329
Lance Berkman, 1B4323111 .277
Carlos Lee, LF5030001 .305
Hunter Pence, RF4022100 .303
Ivan Rodriguez, C5110015 .249
Geoff Blum, 3B4120010 .271
Jeff Keppinger, 2B4122001 .269
Russ Ortiz, P1000001 .174
    Jeff Fulchino, P0000000 .000
   a- Matt Kata, PH1000001 .182
    Alberto Arias, P0000000 .000
   b- Jason Michaels, PH1000011 .176
    Tim Byrdak, P0000000 .000
    Chris Sampson, P0000000 .000
   c- Kazuo Matsui, PH1010000 .239
    Jose Valverde, P0000000 .000
a-flied out for Fulchino in the 4th
b-struck out for Arias in the 6th
c-singled for Sampson in the 8th
2B - Carlos Lee (15, Lannan), Ivan Rodriguez (11, Lannan), Geoff Blum (7, Lannan)
3B - Michael Bourn (8, Bergmann), Jeff Keppinger (2, Lannan)
HR - Lance Berkman (18, MacDougal)
RBI - Michael Bourn (22), Miguel Tejada (47), Lance Berkman 3 (54), Hunter Pence 2 (37), Jeff Keppinger 2 (14)
2-OUT RBI - Lance Berkman 3 (23), Hunter Pence (14)
CS - Hunter Pence (6, 2nd base by Lannan/Bard)
Team LOB - 9
DP - Ortiz-Tejada-Berkman
E - Ivan Rodriguez (3, Throwing)
Houston Astros
Russ Ortiz 3644210 4.44
Jeff Fulchino 1100010 3.05
Alberto Arias (W,2-0) 2100120 1.69
Tim Byrdak (H,6) 1000000 3.77
Chris Sampson (H,14) 1000010 2.68
Jose Valverde 1100120 3.66
HBP - Willingham (by Russ Ortiz)
WP - Russ Ortiz (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Russ Ortiz 68-36, Jeff Fulchino 13-11, Alberto Arias 30-16, Tim Byrdak 9-5, Chris Sampson 10-7, Jose Valverde 22-15
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Russ Ortiz 3-3, Jeff Fulchino 1-1, Alberto Arias 3-1, Tim Byrdak 2-1, Chris Sampson 1-1, Jose Valverde 1-0
Batters Faced - Russ Ortiz 16, Jeff Fulchino 4, Alberto Arias 8, Tim Byrdak 3, Chris Sampson 3, Jose Valverde 5
Game Information
Attendance - 25490
Game Time - 3:01
Temperature - 73
Umpires - Home - Jim Wolf, First Base - Brian O'Nora, Second Base - Field Culbreth, Third Base - Adrian Johnson