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Los Angeles at Houston

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Los Angeles (30-27)000000020250
Houston (25-34) «00500002x7102

Astros' Singleton homers in debut; Trout (back) exits early

CBSSports.com wire reports
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HOUSTON -- Jon Singleton's major league debut didn't get off to a great start.

The 22-year-old slugger, who is no stranger to adversity, made up for it at the end.

Singleton shook off a game that included two strikeouts and a pair of errors at first base to homer in the eighth inning for his first major league hit and help the Houston Astros to a 7-2 win over the Los Angeles Angels.

He was surprised by how he felt after he launched a towering shot off Matt Shoemaker into the bullpen in right-center to make it 6-2.

"I was taken back. It felt like I'd never done it before, to be honest," said Singleton who slugged 75 homers in the minors. "It felt like it was something new. My heart was racing so fast once I hit home plate, it didn't make any sense. I was still excited, still pumped from the adrenaline."

Singleton, a highly touted prospect expected to help Houston back to respectability, made his major league debut a day after agreeing to a five-year, $10 million contract. Fellow young talent George Springer, who was called up in April, stood up in the dugout cheering and yelling as Singleton rounded the bases on his homer.

The players danced and laughed together when Singleton returned to the dugout, a rare scene in recent years as the Astros plummeted to Major League Baseball's basement.

"Winning breeds that," manager Bo Porter said of the moment. "When you start to win and your confidence continues to grow, you're going to have more fun."

Singleton served a 50-game suspension last season for a second violation of a drug of abuse. He told The Associated Press in spring training that he has an addiction to marijuana and had spent a month in a rehabilitation center last year. He moved past his problems this season and got the call to the majors after hitting .267 with 14 homers and 43 RBIs for Triple-A Oklahoma City.

He said that Tuesday meant even more because of his past struggles.

"It's been a long road for the last 16 months so I can't be more appreciative and thankful of this moment I have right now," he said.

Josh Hamilton had a solo homer in the eighth inning in his return from the disabled list after breaking his left thumb on April 8. Fellow outfielder Mike Trout was back after missing two games with a stiff back, but left in the second inning with more back trouble.

Collin Cowgill replaced Trout and homered in the eighth.

Singleton walked and had two strikeouts and two errors at first base before he launched a towering shot off Matt Shoemaker into the bullpen in right-center in the eighth inning for his first major league hit to make it 6-2. Carter followed with his opposite field shot to the seats in right field to give Houston back-to-back homers for the first time this season.

Wilson walked three of the first four batters in the third inning to load the bases. Castro followed with his single to right field to put Houston up 2-0. Matt Dominguez singled to load the bases again and Wilson walked Singleton on four pitches to give the rookie his first career RBI.

He struck out Carter for the second out before Grossman's full-count single drove in two more to stretch the lead to 5-0 and chase Wilson.

Houston starter Collin McHugh (4-3) allowed two hits over five scoreless innings to lower his ERA to 2.52.

Singleton, a highly touted prospect expected to help Houston back to respectability, made his major league debut a day after agreeing to a five-year, $10 million contract. Fellow young talent George Springer, who was called up in April, stood up in the dugout cheering and yelling as the 22-year-old Singleton rounded the bases on his homer.

Singleton is the fourth Astro to homer in his debut and the first since 2008. He joins Ken Caminiti as the only players in team history to walk and homer in their debuts.

Chris Carter followed Singleton's home run with his opposite field shot to the seats in right field to give Houston back-to-back homers for the first time this season.

Jason Castro and Robbie Grossman drove in two runs apiece as Houston took the lead with a five-run third inning.

The Angels were done in by C.J. Wilson's lack of control. Wilson (6-5) walked a season-high five batters, including four in the third, in just 2 2-3 innings.

Wilson has been slowed by flu-like symptoms this week, but was making no excuses.

"You're not going to feel 100 percent, so you just go out there and give everything you have," Wilson said.

Josh Hamilton had a solo homer in the eighth inning in his return from the disabled list after breaking his left thumb on April 8. Fellow Angels outfielder Mike Trout was back after missing two games with a stiff back, but left in the second inning with more back trouble.

"I just didn't feel comfortable," he said. "I didn't want to risk it by pushing it too much ... I don't think it's that severe, but we'll see."

Collin Cowgill replaced Trout and homered in the eighth.

Wilson walked three of the first four batters in the third inning to load the bases. Castro's single to right field to put Houston up 2-0. Matt Dominguez singled to load the bases again and Wilson walked Singleton on four pitches to give the rookie his first career RBI.

Wilson struck out Carter for the second out before Grossman's full-count single drove in two more to stretch the lead to 5-0 and chase Wilson.

Houston starter Collin McHugh (4-3) allowed two hits over five scoreless innings to lower his ERA to 2.52.

Notes

All three of Hamilton's home runs this season have been in Houston. ... The Angels optioned right-hander Jarrett Grube to Salt Lake on Sunday to make room on the roster for Hamilton. ... They also selected the contract of right-hander Cam Bedrosian from Double-A Arkansas and optioned right-hander Michael Kohn to Salt Lake. Bedrosian, a 22-year-old reliever, has a 1.47 ERA in 17 games this season for Arkansas. He struck out one in a scoreless sixth. ... Houston optioned 1B Marc Krauss to Oklahoma City to make room on the roster for Singleton.

 
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The Astros' newest member Jon Singleton gets a hero's shower after he finishes with a homer and 2 RBI in his MLB debut. (USATSI)
The Astros' newest member Jon Singleton gets a hero's shower after he finishes with a homer and 2 RBI in his MLB debut. (USATSI)

Players of the Game
Houston

J. Singleton
AB 3
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 2
Los Angeles

J. Hamilton
AB 3
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Los Angeles (A.L.) Angels
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Kole Calhoun, RF5010012 .227
Mike Trout, CF1000011 .293
   Collin Cowgill, CF3111012 .289
Albert Pujols, 1B4010012 .253
Josh Hamilton, LF3111111 .433
Howie Kendrick, 2B4000000 .289
Raul Ibanez, DH3000002 .144
   a-C.J. Cron, PH-DH1000001 .295
David Freese, 3B3010010 .211
Chris Iannetta, C4000024 .246
Erick Aybar, SS3000101 .273
C.J. Wilson, P0000000 .000
   Mike Morin, P0000000 .000
   Fernando Salas, P0000000 .000
   Cam Bedrosian, P0000000 .000
   Kevin Jepsen, P0000000 .000
   Matt Shoemaker, P0000000 .000
Totals3425228  
a-popped out for Ibanez in the 8th
Batting
2B - Kole Calhoun (7, McHugh)
HR - Collin Cowgill (4, Fields), Josh Hamilton (3, Sipp)
RBI - Collin Cowgill (13), Josh Hamilton (7)
2-OUT RBI - Josh Hamilton (6)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - Kendrick-Aybar-Pujols, Kendrick-Aybar-Pujols-Aybar-Kendrick-Pujols, Kendrick-Aybar-Pujols-Aybar-Kendrick-Pujols-Kendrick-Aybar-Pujols
Los Angeles (A.L.) Angels
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
C.J. Wilson (L,6-5) 2.2655540 3.52
Mike Morin 1.1100000 1.20
Fernando Salas 1100020 3.13
Cam Bedrosian 1000010 0.00
Kevin Jepsen 1000110 3.93
Matt Shoemaker 1222122 4.03
WP - Matt Shoemaker (3)
HBP - Villar (by Matt Shoemaker)
Pitches-Strikes - C.J. Wilson 69-36, Mike Morin 19-10, Fernando Salas 21-14, Cam Bedrosian 13-9, Kevin Jepsen 18-9, Matt Shoemaker 36-17
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - C.J. Wilson 2-0, Mike Morin 2-2, Cam Bedrosian 2-0, Kevin Jepsen 1-0
Batters Faced - C.J. Wilson 17, Mike Morin 5, Fernando Salas 4, Cam Bedrosian 3, Kevin Jepsen 3, Matt Shoemaker 7
Houston Astros
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Dexter Fowler, CF3120200 .257
Jose Altuve, 2B5010015 .316
George Springer, RF3100225 .255
Jason Castro, C4112003 .230
Matt Dominguez, 3B3120110 .256
Jon Singleton, 1B3112122 .333
Chris Carter, DH4121024 .200
Robbie Grossman, LF4012012 .169
Jonathan Villar, SS2100112 .193
   Marwin Gonzalez, SS0000000 .302
Collin McHugh, P0000000 .000
   Darin Downs, P0000000 .000
   Josh Fields, P0000000 .000
   Tony Sipp, P0000000 .000
   Kyle Farnsworth, P0000000 .000
   Chad Qualls, P0000000 .000
Totals317107710  
Batting
2B - Dexter Fowler (7, Morin)
HR - Jon Singleton (1, Shoemaker), Chris Carter (9, Shoemaker)
RBI - Jason Castro 2 (27), Jon Singleton 2 (2), Chris Carter (23), Robbie Grossman 2 (10)
2-OUT RBI - Robbie Grossman 2 (6)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
E - Jon Singleton 2 (2, Misplayed grounder)
Houston Astros
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Collin McHugh (W,4-3) 5200240 2.52
Darin Downs 1000010 1.74
Josh Fields 1.2111031 6.85
Tony Sipp 0111001 0.93
Kyle Farnsworth (H,6) 0.1000000 3.32
Chad Qualls 1100000 2.41
HBP - Freese (by Collin McHugh)
Pitches-Strikes - Collin McHugh 97-63, Darin Downs 8-7, Josh Fields 22-17, Tony Sipp 9-6, Kyle Farnsworth 2-1, Chad Qualls 9-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Collin McHugh 7-5, Darin Downs 2-0, Josh Fields 1-1, Tony Sipp 1-0, Chad Qualls 1-2
Batters Faced - Collin McHugh 21, Darin Downs 3, Josh Fields 6, Tony Sipp 2, Kyle Farnsworth 1, Chad Qualls 4
Game Information
Attendance - 23219
Game Time - 3:31
Temperature - 73
Umpires - Home - Paul Emmel, First Base - Jordan Baker, Second Base - Angel Campos, Third Base - Jerry Meals