Share “Gonzalez suffers first loss: Astros fall...”

Gonzalez suffers first loss: Astros fall to Phils

Associated Press Published: September 14, 2012

HOUSTON (AP) — Houston starter Edgar Gonzalez was looking to improve to 3-0 in his short time with the Houston Astros.

Instead he was done in by a four-run first inning, and the Philadelphia Phillies were well on their way to a 12-6 win Friday night.

Jimmy Rollins hit a leadoff homer, Domonic Brown had a two-run shot and John Mayberry and Ryan Howard each had three RBIs to lead Philadelphia.

The Phillies rebounded from Thursday night's 6-4 loss to Houston, which broke a seven-game winning streak and left them four games back for the second NL wild-card spot. Friday's win cut it to 3 ½, with the Cardinals and Dodgers still playing on the West Coast.

Rollins' homer keyed the four-run first inning on a night when the Phillies came one run shy of a season high.

"The first inning I was struggling with my fastball command," Gonzalez said. "I was trying to hit the corners, but nothing you can do with that. They are good hitters and got it."

Gonzalez had won both of his starts entering Friday's game since his contract was purchased from Triple-A Oklahoma City on Sept. 3.

A two-run homer by Matt Downs got Houston within 5-3 in the fourth. Mayberry's two-run single in the fifth stretched the lead to 7-3.

Justin Maxwell added a solo shot in the fifth for the last-place Astros.

Cole Hamels (15-6) gave up four runs and seven hits over seven innings, and tied a career high for wins set in 2007. It was the first victory over the Astros for the left-hander in his last five tries, and his first win overall since Aug. 18 after not factoring into the decision in his last three outings.

"If you get four runs off Cole Hamels, then it's a big night offensively," Downs said. "It is always tough to put runs up against a guy like that, but they swung the bats extremely well tonight."

Hamels threw 95 pitches, ending a streak of 14 straight games with at least 100 pitches.

Gonzalez (2-1), starting in place of Bud Norris — scratched on Thursday because of a blister on the index finger of his throwing hand — needed 32 pitches to get through the first inning and was done after the fourth.

Four Houston relievers combined to give up eight runs in the four innings after Gonzalez's exit.

Continue reading this story on the...