Astros Beat Rays 2-1 Behind Brett Myers


May 22, 2010

HOUSTON — The Houston Astros don't want to make too much out of one win.

But in a season with so few, this one felt good.

Brett Myers didn't allow an earned run in seven innings and the lowly Astros snapped the mighty Tampa Bay Rays' six-game winning streak with a 2-1 victory Friday night.

Hours after the last-place Astros (15-27) confirmed that ace pitcher Roy Oswalt had requested a trade, the worst team in the National League beat baseball's top team, handing the Rays just their 12th loss in 42 games.

"They're the best team in baseball, so it's a confidence-booster for us, knowing we can beat anybody as long as we pitch good and get some timely hitting," closer Matt Lindstrom said.

Hunter Pence
broke a 1-1 tie with an RBI single in the sixth inning. Myers (3-3) yielded six hits and struck out seven.

"Every win right now is magnified for us," Myers said. "We can't look too far ahead, but we'll enjoy it tonight and try to come back tomorrow and get another one."

Rays starter Matt Garza (5-2) allowed six hits and two runs in eight innings. He struck out six and walked three.

Jeff Keppinger doubled in the sixth inning before Garza walked Lance Berkman on four pitches. Berkman was forced out, but Carlos Lee reached after the one-hop throw to first was late. Pence's line drive single to shallow center sent Keppinger home and gave Houston a 2-1 lead.

"We just continue to play hard and things like that can happen," Pence said. "Every win you want to be a springboard, but really and truly you just have to keep coming every day prepared."

A walk by Tommy Manzella loaded the bases with two outs, but Garza was able to limit the damage in the sixth by retiring Kevin Cash.

Tampa Bay had runners at first and second with one out in the eighth inning after singles by Evan Longoria and John Jaso. Brandon Lyon retired Willy Aybar before striking out Reid Brignac to get out of that inning. Brignac threw his bat and batting helmet down in disgust after the strikeout.

"We looked like we got in at 4 a.m. this morning," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "We didn't have the same energy that we normally have. We made some mental mistakes that we normally don't make. With runners in scoring position tonight, we didn't have that normal good at bat."

Lindstrom gave up one hit in a scoreless ninth for his 10th straight save this season and 22nd overall dating back to last season. The streak is the longest current one in the majors.

Carl Crawford scored in the first when Pence couldn't scoop up Ben Zobrist's double in right field for an error that made it 1-0.

Myers had some trouble in the third when he gave up a single before hitting Carlos Pena with a pitch and walking Jaso to load the bases. He got out of jam by striking out Sean Rodriguez for the third out.

Houston evened the score at 1-1 on an RBI single by Keppinger in the third inning.

"That third inning I kind of got out of my game plan," Garza said. "I felt like I was rushing myself, and I was. That's what happens when you don't stay within yourself."

Zobrist got his second double in the fifth inning but was caught stealing third base. Longoria walked before second out on a pop fly by Pena. The Rays came away empty in that inning when Longoria was picked off at first while Jaso was batting.


Friday was only Tampa Bay's second trip to Minute Maid Park and the first since 2003. … Houston has won six of seven all-time meetings with the Rays.

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