It wasn’t much, but three solo home runs were able to do the trick Friday afternoon for the Chicago Cubs. Starter Matt Garza didn’t need much to defeat the horrendous Houston Astros, but he got what he needed to help the Cubs to a 3-1 victory.
Anthony Rizzo, Darwin Barney, and Scott Hairston each hit a solo home run, one came in the fourth, another in the fifth, and the last one came in the sixth. All of these bombs came off of Astro starter Dallas Keuchel, who took the loss in this game and moved his record to 4-4. Keuchel got through six innings of work, gave up nine hits, and the three runs. The bullpen did a great job for the Astros, they pitched two innings and gave up just one hit, but got no help from the offense.
The lone Astro run came in the seventh inning when Chris Carter hit a solo home run. The Astros struggled big time at the plate, they only managed four hits and you can credit that to Matt Garza’s stuff.
Garza went eight very solid innings, gave up four hits, one earned run, and struck out eight. Garza seemed to have everything working and had Astro hitters off balance all night long. He didn’t get much run support, but he didn’t really need it thankfully. Kevin Gregg came in for the ninth inning and pitched perfectly, which earned him his eleventh save of the year.
Barney paced the Cubs at the top of the line-up, he had three hits in four trips. Rizzo was the other Cub that had multiple hits in the game. He had two hits in four trips. Starlin Castro’s average continues to drop as he continues to struggle, his average is now down to .232.
Chris Carter was the only Astro with multiple hits in the game, he had two of the four hits for them in this one.
The series will continue tomorrow at Wrigley Field. The starting pitching match-up is scheduled to be, Bud Norris (5-7) for the Astros and then Travis Wood (5-6) for the Cubs. Game time is set for 3:05 CT at the friendly confines.