Rookie O'Malley stars in Marniers' win over Astros
(The Sports Exchange) - Rookie Shawn O'Malley delivered a two-run, two-out, tiebreaking single in the eighth inning, leading the Seattle Mariners to a 6-4 win over the Houston Astros on Tuesday.
Houston (83-75) fell a half-game behind the Los Angeles Angels in the race for the final American League wild-card spot. The Astros also dropped to 2 1/2 games behind Texas in AL West standings with just four games left on Houston's schedule.
O'Malley's single to left-center broke a 4-4 tie and helped Seattle (75-83) snap a six-game losing streak. The rookie center fielder came off the bench and finished 1-for-2.
Mariners closer Tom Wilhelmsen, who came on with one out in the eighth inning of a tie game, earned the win after pitching 1 2/3 scoreless innings. Wilhelmsen (2-2) got his first win since May 15.
Houston's Oliver Perez (0-3) took the loss after one of the two batters he faced, outfielder Seth Smith, singled and eventually came around to score the game-winning run on O'Malley's hit.
The Mariners had four consecutive players reach base with two outs in the eighth, with reliever Pat Neshek giving up two singles and a walk after coming on for Perez with a runner on first.
Neshek allowed a single to first baseman Mark Trumbo and walked pinch hitter Franklin Gutierrez before O'Malley delivered the big hit.
Houston got a baserunner in the top of the ninth, but right fielder George Springer, who had three hits and an RBI, flied out to right to end the game.
Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano hit a two-run homer in the sixth, tying the score 4-4. Houston left fielder Marwin Gonzalez also hit a tying home run in the fifth, with his solo shot pulling the Astros even at 2-2. Continued...