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Chicago at Houston

Scoreboard
Chi. White Sox (28-37)100000200380
Houston (25-44) «01021000x461

Castro, Carter homer as Astros win third straight

CBSSports.com wire reports
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HOUSTON -- Houston's Lucas Harrell was drafted by the Chicago White Sox and spent his first seven years with the organization before the Astros claimed him off waivers in 2011.

He still hasn't forgotten the snub, which made Saturday night's win particularly sweet.

Harrell pitched into the seventh inning and Jason Castro and Chris Carter homered in the fourth inning to give Houston the lead, and the Astros held on for their third straight victory, 4-3 over the White Sox.

Harrell (5-7) allowed seven hits and three runs with a season-high seven strikeouts in 6 2/3 innings.

"It's always nice to beat them," said Harrell, who is 2-0 in two starts against the White Sox. "When someone tells you that you can't play for them and they don't think you're good enough there's a little chip on your shoulder when you play them."

The game was tied 1-1 when Castro launched a solo homer into the bullpen in right-center to start the fourth inning. Carter's one-out homer clanged off the foul pole in left field to extend the lead to 3-1 and leave starter John Danks (1-3) shaking his head. It was the team-leading 14th homer for Carter, who also leads the Astros with 36 RBI.

He's the first Astro to have at least 14 home runs by June 15 since 2008.

Castro, the catcher, thought the fifth inning was important to help Harrell on the mound.

"That definitely took some pressure off Lucas and he was able to really focus on pitching," Castro said. "He's really good with that lead and maintaining it. Once we got that lead you could tell that he really kind of settled in and was ready to go deep into the game."

Brandon Barnes drove in a run with a double in the fifth inning to make it 4-1.

Adam Dunn hit his 18th homer to start the White Sox seventh and Gordon Beckham's ground-rule double later in the inning made it 4-3.

Danks yielded five hits and four runs in six-plus innings.

The White Sox had runners at the corners with two outs in the eighth inning, but pinch-hitter Jeff Keppinger grounded into a force out to end the threat.

Jose Veras pitched a scoreless ninth for his 13th save. He allowed a walk to start the ninth, but picked off pinch runner Jordan Danks at second to end the game.

"You practice plays like that in spring training and, lo and behold, you get this deep into the season and it ends up being a very big play in a game in which we were able to win," Houston manager Bo Porter said.

The White Sox have dropped 11 of their last 12 on the road and are last in the AL Central.

"Obviously we're not in a very good position right now, but there's a lot of baseball left," Danks said.

Alexei Ramirez singled with one out in the first and stole second base. The White Sox took a 1-0 lead on a two-out RBI single by Paul Konerko.

Harrell settled down after that, retiring the next 11 batters he faced. Chicago's next hit came when Beckham singled with one out in the fifth inning. But Harrell still faced the minimum in that inning after Tyler Flowers grounded into a double play.

Porter was impressed with Harrell's work.

"I'm extremely happy," he said. "He battled and kept those guys at bay. He continued to attack the strike zone."

He threw a 1-2-3 sixth inning before running into trouble in the seventh. Dunn's sixth homer this month landed in the Crawford Boxes in left field to cut the lead to 4-2.

Conor Gillaspie singled with one out and took second on an error by right fielder Trevor Crowe on the play. A ground-rule double by Beckham with two outs got Chicago within 4-3.

Flowers singled to chase Harrell. He was replaced by Paul Clemens, who struck out Alejandro De Aza to limit the damage.

Danks plunked Carlos Pena with two outs in the second inning to end a career-long streak during which he retired 26 consecutive batters. Ronny Cedeno followed with a double that scored Pena to tie it at 1-all. The double was the first extra-base hit Danks had allowed in 12 2/3 innings.

He got back on track after that and sat down the next four batters, with two strikeouts, causing frustration among Houston's hitters. Jose Altuve threw his bat angrily when he struck out on a full-count to end the third inning.

Matt Dominguez singled down the left field line to start Houston's fifth. A run-scoring double by Barnes with one out that rolled into the corner of right field pushed Houston's lead to 4-1.

Notes

  • De Aza was back in the lineup a night after sitting out with a stomach ailment.
  • The series continues on Sunday when Chicago's Hector Santiago opposes Dallas Keuchel.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
 
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Players of the Game
Houston

M. Dominguez
AB 3
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 0
Chicago

A. Ramirez
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 0
 
Chicago White Sox
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Alejandro De Aza, CF4000022 .265
Alexei Ramirez, SS4120020 .269
Alex Rios, RF3000111 .285
Adam Dunn, 1B4111013 .182
Paul Konerko, DH3011110 .239
Conor Gillaspie, 3B3110002 .249
   a- Jeff Keppinger, PH-3B1000002 .225
Dayan Viciedo, LF3000121 .222
    Jordan Danks, PR0000000 .120
Gordon Beckham, 2B4021011 .322
Tyler Flowers, C4010012 .223
Totals33383311  
a-hit into fielder's choice for Gillaspie in the 8th
Batting
2B - Alexei Ramirez (13, Clemens), Gordon Beckham (3, Harrell)
HR - Adam Dunn (18, Harrell)
RBI - Adam Dunn (40), Paul Konerko (25), Gordon Beckham (3)
2-OUT RBI - Paul Konerko (16), Gordon Beckham (2)
SB - Alexei Ramirez (14, 2nd base off Harrell/Castro), Jordan Danks (1, 2nd base off Veras/Castro)
PK - Jordan Danks (1, Veras)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
DP - Lindstrom-Beckham-Dunn
Chicago White Sox
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
John Danks (L,1-3) 6544152 4.50
Matt Lindstrom 1100010 2.83
Nate Jones 1000010 5.08
HBP - Pena (by John Danks)
Pitches-Strikes - John Danks 76-54, Matt Lindstrom 11-9, Nate Jones 10-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - John Danks 6-6, Matt Lindstrom 1-0, Nate Jones 2-0
Batters Faced - John Danks 24, Matt Lindstrom 3, Nate Jones 3
Houston Astros
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Brandon Barnes, CF4011010 .271
Jose Altuve, 2B4000010 .292
Jason Castro, C4111020 .266
J.D. Martinez, LF3000010 .260
Chris Carter, DH3111010 .212
Carlos Pena, 1B1100100 .228
Ronny Cedeno, SS3011001 .248
Matt Dominguez, 3B3120001 .234
Trevor Crowe, RF3000012 .200
Totals2846417  
Batting
2B - Brandon Barnes (9, Danks), Ronny Cedeno (6, Danks), Matt Dominguez (11, Lindstrom)
HR - Jason Castro (9, Danks), Chris Carter (14, Danks)
RBI - Brandon Barnes (16), Jason Castro (21), Chris Carter (36), Ronny Cedeno (10)
2-OUT RBI - Ronny Cedeno (4)
CS - Brandon Barnes (5, 3rd base by Danks/Flowers)
Team LOB - 2
Fielding
DP - Cedeno-Altuve-Pena
E - Trevor Crowe (3, Misplayed grounder)
Houston Astros
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Lucas Harrell (W,5-7) 6.2733171 4.48
Paul Clemens (H,6) 0.2100020 4.71
Wesley Wright (H,6) 0.1000100 4.32
Hector Ambriz (H,11) 0.1000000 4.88
Jose Veras (S,13) 1000120 3.60
IBB - Konerko by Wesley Wright
Pitches-Strikes - Lucas Harrell 106-69, Paul Clemens 9-8, Wesley Wright 11-4, Hector Ambriz 4-3, Jose Veras 15-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Lucas Harrell 6-6, Wesley Wright 1-0, Hector Ambriz 1-0
Batters Faced - Lucas Harrell 27, Paul Clemens 3, Wesley Wright 2, Hector Ambriz 1, Jose Veras 3
Game Information
Attendance - 21549
Game Time - 2:39
Temperature - 73
Umpires - Home - Doug Eddings, First Base - Jordan Baker, Second Base - Dana DeMuth, Third Base - Paul Nauert