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Houston at Pittsburgh

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Houston (11-31)100030000473
Pittsburgh (25-17) «1000010215102

Astros flub bases-loaded fly in 9th, handing Pirates a win

CBSSports.com wire reports
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PITTSBURGH -- All Jimmy Paredes was thinking about was catching the ball. Same with Jake Elmore.

Not that concentration helped.

Russell Martin's bases-loaded fly ball popped out Paredes' glove when he ran into the second baseman with two outs in the ninth inning, and the second missed catch of the night by a Houston right fielder helped the Pittsburgh Pirates rally past the Astros 5-4 Friday.

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"I'm anticipating the ball being hit to me, just like I do on every pitch," Paredes said. "All I'm thinking about is catching the ball for the third out. That's all I wanted to do. I was watching the ball and then I hit into him. Sometimes things like that happen in this game, and it's frustrating to lose like this."

Houston manager Bo Porter said Paredes, who was charged with an error, should have peeled off and let Elmore make the play. Paredes collided with second baseman Jose Altuve on Monday night while chasing a pop fly at Detroit.

"It's not a lack of communication, because there's only one person that should be communicating," Porter said. "The infielder is not saying anything. If he gets underneath the ball, the outfielder is running in and he's looking at the infielder. And if the infielder is waving his hands and under the ball, you let him take the ball."

That wasn't Houston's only fielding foible.

Down 4-1, Pittsburgh started its comeback in the sixth when Chris Carter, usually a designated hitter, dropped Andrew McCutchen's fly ball to right for a three-base error and Garrett Jones followed with a double.

Pedro Alvarez hit a two-run homer in the eighth, a 462-foot drive that cleared the right-field stands and went into the Allegheny River on one hop.

Starling Marte singled off Edgar Gonzalez (0-1) leading off the ninth, and Travis Snider hit into a forceout, with the Astros failing to turn a double play with a late relay throw to first by Elmore.

McCutchen's single put runners at the corners, and Gonzalez fielded Brandon Inge's comebacker and dropped it for an error as he turned to throw to second, missing his chance to start an inning-ending double play.

Neil Walker took a called third strike with a full count, and Martin lifted a full-count pitch to short right-center field, where Elmore settled under the ball and Paredes slammed into him as the ball hit his glove and fell to the field.

"In that situation, the crowd is so loud that you can't hear anybody calling for the ball," Elmore said. "We had already let one ball drop, and I didn't want to a second one to fall, too. I was waving my arms, hoping Jimmy would see me, but he had his eye on the ball the whole time."

Justin Wilson (4-0) pitched a scoreless ninth as the Pirates (25-17) won for the seventh time in eight games to move a season-high eight games over .500.

"This game's crazy sometimes," Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle said. "The crowd helped us there on the error. They made it tough on the fielders and they created a break for us."

McCutchen homered and had three hits for Pittsburgh.

Houston's 11-31 start is its worst and matched Miami for the poorest record in the major leagues.

Astros starter Jordan Lyles allowed two runs -- one earned -- and four hits in five innings and is 0-4 with a 6.75 ERA in six career starts against Pittsburgh.

Pirates starter Jeanmar Gomez gave up four runs -- three earned -- and five hits in 4 2/3 innings.

Houston built a 4-1 lead on Jason Castro's sacrifice fly in the first and a three-run third that included Matt Dominguez's solo homer, Elmore's run-scoring single and a throwing error by Walker at second.

McCutchen homered in the first.

"Our defense has been one of our strong suits pretty much the whole year," Porter said, "but tonight we did not play good defense and we put ourselves in position where it cost us the ballgame."

Notes

  • The Pirates placed RHP Jose Contreras on the bereavement list and recalled RHP Jared Hughes from Triple-A Indianapolis.
  • Altuve missed his third straight game because of the death of his grandmother and will be activated from the bereavement list prior to Saturday night's game. Elmore likely will be optioned back to Triple-A Oklahoma.
  • Astros RHP Bud Norris will start Tuesday against Kansas City rather than Sunday against Pittsburgh. He left Monday's start because of lower back spasms while warming up for the sixth inning. RHP Lucas Harrell and LHP Dallas Keuchel both had their turns moved up a day. Harrell will face the Pirates on Sunday and Keuchel will pitch Monday against the Royals.
  • LHP Philip Humber accepted an outright assignment to Oklahoma after Houston designated him for assignment last weekend. Humber was 0-8 with a 9.59 ERA in nine games, including seven starts, for the Astros.
  • LHP Erik Bedard (0-2, 6.67) will start Saturday night for Houston against RHP A.J. Burnett (3-4, 2.73). The Pirates released Bedard last Aug. 30.
 
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D'oh! A collision in shallow right field costs the Astros with the bases loaded and two outs in the ninth inning.  (Getty Images)
D'oh! A collision in shallow right field costs the Astros with the bases loaded and two outs in the ninth inning. (Getty Images)

Players of the Game
Pittsburgh

A. McCutchen
AB 5
R 2
H 3
HR 1
RBI 1
Pittsburgh

P. Alvarez
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 2
 
Houston Astros
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Robbie Grossman, CF4210110 .207
Jake Elmore, 2B3011000 .364
Jason Castro, C2001100 .237
Chris Carter, RF3010112 .220
    Jimmy Paredes, PR-RF0000000 .200
J.D. Martinez, LF3000011 .236
    Paul Clemens, P0000000 .000
    Wesley Wright, P1000011 .000
    Hector Ambriz, P0000000 .000
    Edgar Gonzalez, P0000000 .000
Carlos Pena, 1B3010100 .234
Matt Dominguez, 3B4111023 .245
Marwin Gonzalez, SS4110001 .250
Jordan Lyles, P1000010 .000
    Travis Blackley, P0000000 .000
    Trevor Crowe, LF1010100 .250
Totals2947357  
Batting
2B - Robbie Grossman (5, Gomez)
HR - Matt Dominguez (3, Gomez)
SF - Jason Castro (1)
SH - Jake Elmore (1), Jordan Lyles (1)
RBI - Jake Elmore (1), Jason Castro (10), Matt Dominguez (17)
2-OUT RBI - Jake Elmore (1)
CS - Jake Elmore (1, 2nd base by Gomez/Martin), Trevor Crowe (1, 2nd base by Wilson/Martin)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
E - Chris Carter (2, Dropped fly), Edgar Gonzalez (1, Misplayed grounder), Jimmy Paredes (1, Dropped fly)
Houston Astros
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Jordan Lyles 5421241 6.63
Travis Blackley (H,5) 0.2100010 3.60
Paul Clemens (H,2) 1100100 4.00
Wesley Wright (H,2) 0.1111000 2.95
Hector Ambriz (BS,2) 1111001 6.16
Edgar Gonzalez (L,0-1) 0.2210010 7.43
HBP - Marte (by Jordan Lyles)
WP - Hector Ambriz (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Jordan Lyles 89-52, Travis Blackley 8-6, Paul Clemens 21-11, Wesley Wright 6-5, Hector Ambriz 10-5, Edgar Gonzalez 20-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jordan Lyles 5-6, Travis Blackley 1-0, Paul Clemens 2-1, Wesley Wright 1-0, Hector Ambriz 2-1, Edgar Gonzalez 2-1
Batters Faced - Jordan Lyles 22, Travis Blackley 3, Paul Clemens 5, Wesley Wright 2, Hector Ambriz 4, Edgar Gonzalez 6
Pittsburgh Pirates
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Starling Marte, LF4010010 .314
Travis Snider, RF5100011 .277
Andrew McCutchen, CF5231000 .276
Garrett Jones, 1B2011100 .288
   a- Brandon Inge, PH-1B2000001 .240
Neil Walker, 2B4110113 .255
Russell Martin, C5020003 .279
Pedro Alvarez, 3B4122012 .197
Clint Barmes, SS2000012 .229
    Vin Mazzaro, P0000000 .000
   b- Gaby Sanchez, PH0000100 .254
    Tony Watson, P0000000 .000
   c- Jose Tabata, PH1000000 .282
    Justin Wilson, P0000000 .000
Jeanmar Gomez, P1000010 .100
    Jordy Mercer, SS3000003 .250
Totals38510436  
a-grounded out for G. Jones in the 7th
b-walked for Mazzaro in the 6th
c-grounded out for Watson in the 8th
Batting
2B - Andrew McCutchen (10, Clemens), Garrett Jones (10, Lyles)
HR - Andrew McCutchen (6, Lyles), Pedro Alvarez (7, Ambriz)
RBI - Andrew McCutchen (23), Garrett Jones (24), Pedro Alvarez 2 (20)
2-OUT RBI - Andrew McCutchen (3)
CS - Starling Marte (4, 2nd base by Lyles/Castro)
Team LOB - 11
Fielding
E - Clint Barmes (5, Missed catch of throw), Neil Walker (3, Throwing)
Pittsburgh Pirates
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Jeanmar Gomez 4.2543211 2.78
Vin Mazzaro 1.1000130 2.87
Tony Watson 2200120 5.23
Justin Wilson (W,4-0) 1000110 1.40
Pitches-Strikes - Jeanmar Gomez 70-44, Vin Mazzaro 24-13, Tony Watson 31-21, Justin Wilson 15-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jeanmar Gomez 7-6, Vin Mazzaro 1-0, Tony Watson 2-1, Justin Wilson 1-0
Batters Faced - Jeanmar Gomez 21, Vin Mazzaro 5, Tony Watson 8, Justin Wilson 3
Game Information
Attendance - 29743
Game Time - 3:30
Temperature - 80
Umpires - Home - Dale Scott, First Base - C.B. Bucknor, Second Base - Todd Tichenor, Third Base - Clint Fagan