Astros stay alive in AL West race, Keuchel notches 20th win
((The Sports Xchange)) - Houston left-hander Dallas Keuchel became the American League's first 20-game winner and the Astros hit four home runs and stayed alive in AL West race with a 21-5 trouncing of the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on Friday.
Right fielder George Springer, shortstop Carlos Correa, center fielder Colby Rasmus and third baseman Luis Valbuena homered for the Astros (85-75), who set a franchise record for runs in a nine-inning game.
The Astros are two games behind division-leader Texas (87-73) with two games to play after the Rangers lost to the Los Angeles Angels on Friday.
Houston is one game ahead of the Los Angeles Angels (84-76) and two ahead of the Minnesota Twins (83-77) for the second AL wild card berth.
Keuchel, a top AL Cy Young contender, gave up two runs and six hits in six innings. He struck out three and walked two. His 2.48 ERA is second in the league, and he leads the league with 232 innings and a 1.02 WHIP.
Correa had three hits and was a double short of the cycle. He scored four runs as the Astros scored in every inning but the fifth and the ninth.
Rasmus had two hits and three RBIs and Valbuena had two doubles to go with his homer and two RBIs.
Rookie Peter O'Brien hit his first major league homer and third baseman Aaron Hill had three hits and two RBIs for Arizona (78-82), which committed four errors while having a four-game winning streak snapped.
Springer reached on an infield error with one out in the first inning before three singles and a walk plated three runs. Rasmus singled in one run and first baseman Chris Carter singled in two. Continued...