Arizona at Houston

Scoreboard
Arizona (29-39)000100000140
Houston (30-37) «10110020x591

Astros 5, Diamondbacks 1

CBSSports.com wire reports
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HOUSTON -- Houston manager Bo Porter knows that many question why he keeps penciling Chris Carter into the lineup game after game when the designated hitter is batting below .200.

Carter illustrated perfectly Wednesday night why Porter sticks with him.

Carter hit two home runs, Dallas Keuchel pitched eight strong innings and the Astros beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-1.

Carter's first solo home run made it 3-1 in the fourth inning, and he added an opposite-field shot in the seventh. It was the fifth career multihomer game for Carter and second this year.

The slugger has struggled this season and is batting only .199, but his power is undeniable and he's tied for the team lead with 12 home runs.

"He's been up and down this year," Porter said. "The power numbers are there. The batting average is not there, but at the same time he's had some big hits and tonight is a step in a huge direction to him getting going."

Carter led the Astros with 29 home runs and 82 RBI last year in his first full season in the majors. He feels less pressure at the plate now that the lineup has been beefed up with the addition of rookies Jon Singleton and George Springer.

"It's nice to have guys like that where you don't feel like you're the only guy in the lineup where you have to do everything or everyone is looking to you to get a home run or something," Carter said.

Keuchel (8-3) won for the sixth time in seven starts. He allowed four hits and a run, striking out five and lowering his ERA to 2.38. Even though the game is more than a month away, Porter was already stumping for Keuchel to get the All-Star call.

"You look at the season Dallas Keuchel has put together to this point and if he's not an All-Star, what is? He continues to impress," Porter said. "It's a joy to watch."

Brandon McCarthy (1-9) allowed eight hits and four runs in six-plus innings to remain winless since May 3.

"I wasn't sharp from the get-go, but I thought I did a good job to get as deep as I could," McCarthy said. "The seventh inning there. The home run hurts and the guys getting on after that hurts and kind of spoils everything."

Aaron Hill homered in the fourth for Arizona's only extra-base hit.

Springer had two hits and an RBI and Singleton drove in a run as the Astros won for the fifth time in seven games.

McCarthy has had success in Houston in the past and entered the game 2-0 with a 0.60 ERA in his career at Minute Maid Park.

But the Astros got going against him early, with Springer singling in the first, Singleton drawing a walk and Jason Castro grounding an RBI single. Singleton was thrown out at third on the play.

Jonathan Villar singled to start Houston's third before a one-out single by Springer. Both players advanced on a wild pitch by McCarthy before Villar scored on a groundout by Singleton to make it 2-0.

The Diamondbacks didn't get a hit until Hill led off the fourth with his homer to the Crawford Boxes in left field to cut the lead to 2-1.

Paul Goldschmidt singled after Hill's homer, but Keuchel got back on track after that and retired 13 of his next 14 batters. The only hit in that span came on a single by Chris Owings with one out in the sixth inning.

Ender Inciarte singled with two outs in the Arizona eighth, but Keuchel retired Owings to end the inning and Keuchel's night.

Springer drove in a run with a sacrifice fly in the seventh inning.

Notes

The series wraps up on Thursday when Arizona's Wade Miley opposes Scott Feldman. ... Houston 2B Jose Altuve missed his first game of the season because of soreness in his oblique muscle. Porter said Altuve didn't want to take the day off and tried to convince him to let him play. ... Diamondbacks OF Gerardo Parra was out of the lineup for a scheduled day off. ... The Astros signed several players taken in last week's draft. They signed second round pick 1B A.J. Reed, RHP Ryan Thompson (23rd round), RHP Vince Wheeland (24th round), LHP Zach Davis (25th round), INF Mott Hyde (26th round), RHP Brandon McNitt (27th round) and RHP Keegan Yuhl (35th round).

 
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

C. Carter
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 2
RBI 2
Houston

D. Keuchel
IP 8.0
H 4
ER 1
BB 1
K 5
 

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Arizona Diamondbacks
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Chris Owings, SS4010001 .270
Aaron Hill, 2B4111001 .250
Paul Goldschmidt, 1B4010021 .308
Miguel Montero, C4000001 .271
Martin Prado, 3B2000100 .277
Cody Ross, LF3000000 .193
David Peralta, RF3000011 .333
Nick Evans, DH3000020 .091
Ender Inciarte, CF3010000 .210
Brandon McCarthy, P0000000 .125
   J.J. Putz, P0000000 .000
   Joe Thatcher, P0000000 .000
   Will Harris, P0000000 .000
Totals3014115  
Batting
HR - Aaron Hill (6, Keuchel)
RBI - Aaron Hill (31)
Team LOB - 3
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Ender Inciarte 1
DP - Prado-Hill-Goldschmidt
Arizona Diamondbacks
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Brandon McCarthy (L,1-9) 6855242 5.29
J.J. Putz 0.2100010 4.63
Joe Thatcher 0.1000000 3.00
Will Harris 1000100 7.84
WP - Brandon McCarthy (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Brandon McCarthy 86-51, J.J. Putz 9-6, Joe Thatcher 3-1, Will Harris 15-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brandon McCarthy 7-5, Joe Thatcher 1-0
Batters Faced - Brandon McCarthy 26, J.J. Putz 3, Joe Thatcher 1, Will Harris 4
Houston Astros
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Dexter Fowler, CF4000034 .280
George Springer, RF3121000 .258
Jon Singleton, 1B3001102 .243
Jason Castro, C3011101 .224
Matt Dominguez, 3B4000012 .246
Chris Carter, DH4222001 .199
Alex Presley, LF4120001 .250
Marwin Gonzalez, 2B2000111 .269
Jonathan Villar, SS3120000 .204
Dallas Keuchel, P0000000 .000
   Chad Qualls, P0000000 .000
Totals3059535  
Batting
HR - Chris Carter 2 (12, McCarthy)
SF - George Springer (2)
RBI - George Springer (36), Jon Singleton (7), Jason Castro (29), Chris Carter 2 (29)
SB - Alex Presley (2, 2nd base off McCarthy/Montero)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Villar-Singleton, Villar-Singleton-Villar-M. Gonzalez-Singleton
E - Matt Dominguez (7, Misplayed grounder)
Houston Astros
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Dallas Keuchel (W,8-3) 8411151 2.38
Chad Qualls 1000000 1.99
Pitches-Strikes - Dallas Keuchel 101-69, Chad Qualls 10-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dallas Keuchel 14-4, Chad Qualls 2-1
Batters Faced - Dallas Keuchel 28, Chad Qualls 3
Game Information
Attendance - 24319
Game Time - 2:22
Temperature - 73
Umpires - Home - Al Porter, First Base - Joe West, Second Base - Marty Foster, Third Base - Rob Drake