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Rodriguez, Lamb help Astros beat Mariners in series opener

Jun 16, 2007 - 4:38 AM HOUSTON (Ticker) -- Wandy Rodriguez tossed 7 2/3 solid innings and Mike Lamb homered and drove in three runs as the Houston Astros posted a 5-1 triumph over the Seattle Mariners on Friday night.

In his first career start against Seattle, Rodriguez (4-6) yielded one run and six hits with seven strikeouts without a walk to rebound from a disappointing outing his last time out.

On Sunday, the Dominican righthander was tagged for five runs in five frames of a 6-3 setback against the Chicago White Sox.

"This was the best I've pitched," Rodriguez said. "I had concentration and good location. Everything worked out. It felt very good."

Rodriguez even received a standing ovation when he departed.

"It's nice for the fans to appreciate what I did," Rodriguez said.

Rodriguez's only mistake came in the sixth when Willie Bloomquist hit an inside-the-park home run that got by center fielder Hunter Pence and rolled up the hill in deep center.

It was the 22nd inside-the-park homer by a Mariner and first since teammate Adrian Beltre accomplished the feat on June 26 against Boston 's Mike Timlin.

"I was just hoping (Pence) wasn't going to run it down," Bloomquist said. "I had no idea where the ball was, I just kept running. Carlos (Garcia, third base coach) kept waving me.

"Felix (Hernandez) was on deck, but he didn't tell me to stand or slide, so I didn't take any chances."

The game got interesting in the eighth as Yuniesky Betancourt and speedy Ichiro Suzuki both singled, chasing Rodriguez and putting runners on the corners. But reliever Dan Wheeler fanned Jose Lopez to end the threat.

Lamb got the Astros on the board first in the second with an RBI single to left to plate Mark Loretta, who stroked a leadoff base hit against starter Felix Hernandez (3-4).

Lamb singled and scored on Brad Ausmus' run-scoring single in the fourth.

Lamb struck once again in the sixth, belting a two-run blast off Hernandez for his fourth homer of the season to extend Houston's lead to 4-1. The third baseman finished 4-for-4 to raise his average to .289 on the season.

"This was much needed from the team's standpoint and from mine," Lamb said. "I've been bad for about a month, and that was a month too long. The team was facing one of the best young pitchers in the game, and we went after him."

Astros manager Phil Garner was able to witness a rare combination of productive offense and solid pitching from his team.

"We haven't had anybody step up with a big night like that for us in a while," Garner said. "This looks like more of what we thought we'd see this year. We were aggressive, we jumped on (Hernandez) from the start."

And Rodriguez kept Mariner bats silent while Houston pounded out a season-high 16 hits.

"I thought (Rodriguez) was in complete control of the game," Garner said. "He had a great tempo. He used both sides of the plate and against a good hitting team. He just went right after them."

In the eighth, Craig Biggio stroked an RBI double for his 657th career two-bagger to tie Nap Lajoie for sixth on the all-time mark. He had three hits to close within 12 of 3,000.

Hernandez allowed four runs and a season-high 12 hits with six strikeouts and one walk in six frames in remaining winless over his last four trips. He was making his first career start vs. Houston.

"I'm still struggling," Hernandez said. "I have to do better and work as hard as possible. I feel good, but I don't know what's wrong. My two-seamer's not working, but hopefully, I'll find it. That's baseball. Tomorrow's another day."

Seattle manager Mike Hargrove hopes Hernandez finds his groove soon.

"I don't see consistent command," Hargrove said. "He got some balls up to (Lance) Berkman, (Carlos) Lee and Lamb. His stuff is still good, he just needs to locate it better.

"He's getting too much of the plate with his pitches."








  • ML
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    SEATTLE 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 6 0
    HOUSTON 0 1 0 1 0 2 0 1 x 5 16 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: SEA - FELIX HERNANDEZ, JASON DAVIS (7TH), ERIC O'FLAHERTY (7TH),
    SEAN GREEN (8TH) AND KENJI JOHJIMA
    HOU - WANDY RODRIGUEZ, DAN WHEELER (8TH), BRAD LIDGE
    (9TH) AND

    Jun 15 10:45 PM


  • ML
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY CRAIG BIGGIO SCORED ERIC BRUNTLETT.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, C BIGGIO ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 1
    HOUSTON 5 BOTTOM, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: H PENCE (.339, 0-FOR-4)

    Mariners vs. AstrosJun 15 10:28 PM


  • ML
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY MIKE LAMB (4) TO RIGHT WITH 1 OUT IN
    THE 6TH OFF FELIX HERNANDEZ SCORED LUKE SCOTT.
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 1, HOUSTON 4
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: B AUSMUS (.258, 1-FOR-2, RBI)

    Mariners vs. AstrosJun 15 9:37 PM


  • ML
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO INSIDE-THE-PARK HOME RUN BY WILLIE BLOOMQUIST (1) TO
    DEEP CENTER WITH 0 OUT IN THE 6TH OFF WANDY RODRIGUEZ.
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 1, HOUSTON 2
    DUE UP FOR SEATTLE: F HERNANDEZ (.333, 0-FOR-1)

    Mariners vs. AstrosJun 15 9:25 PM


  • ML
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY BRAD AUSMUS SCORED LUKE SCOTT.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, B AUSMUS ON FIRST, M LAMB ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 0
    HOUSTON 2 BOTTOM, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: W RODRIGUEZ (.190, 0-FOR-1)

    Mariners vs. AstrosJun 15 9:07 PM


  • ML
    AT HOUSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY MIKE LAMB SCORED MARK LORETTA.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M LAMB ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 0
    HOUSTON 1 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR HOUSTON: B AUSMUS (.255, 1 HR, 13 RBI)

    Mariners vs. AstrosJun 15 8:30 PM
  • pauly Go M's!

    Mariners vs. AstrosJun 15 7:16 AM
  • 5
    roots
    pauly Added 5 roots

    Mariners vs. AstrosJun 15 7:16 AM