HOUSTON — Trey Mancini scored a second straight game, a three-run shot that led the Houston Astros to a 6-3 win and a three-game win over the collapsing Minnesota Twins on Thursday night.
Mancini, who hit a two-run homer Wednesday, has six homers and 16 RBI in 18 games since he was traded from the Orioles.
“That’s why he’s hitting where he’s hitting because I was hoping he had a few runners ahead of him,” said manager Dusty Baker. “That’s why I met (Christian) Vazquez before him because he’s coming to base and he’s been getting base hits. But that was huge. “
The Twins have lost a season-high six games to finish 6-0 against AL West leaders Astros this season.
“We have to go out there and play all of the baseball that we talked about,” manager Rocco Baldelli said. “The glimpses of things you’d rather see than some of the things we’ve seen lately. But we have to bring it together.
The game was tied in the first game when Mancini connected Chris Archer (2-7) on his shot to the pitches in left field.
“If I could have thrown a pitch or two, it would have been a lot different,” Archer said. “Well, yeah, I’m definitely disappointed.”
Jeremy Peña hit an RBI double with two outs in Houston’s eight to make it 6-3.
Luis Garcia (11-8) had five hits and three runs with five strikeouts in five innings for his third straight win. Rafael Montero scored a goalless ninth on his eighth save.
“That was the best bullpen night we’ve had in a while,” Baker said. “It was relatively clean, the boys had clean innings. I don’t think we had many walks. Vazquez guided them through the game very well which was a great job from him.”
Carlos Correa had an unforgettable streak in his first few games against Houston since leaving the Astros after seven seasons to sign with the Twins. He went 0-for-4 on Thursday night to end the series 1-for-11.
Jorge Polanco homed Minnesota to right field with two outs in the first inning for a 1-0 lead.
Jose Altuve hit a leadoff double late in the inning and Yuli Gurriel had an infield single. Yordan Alvarez then started a double which Altuve scored to make it 1-1.
Alex Bregman and Vazquez hit back-to-back singles before Mancini’s homer put the Astros ahead.
Nick Gordon tripled early in the second and met on a wild throw from Garcia to cut it to 4-2.
Bregman doubled with an out in the third and the Astros extended the lead to 5-2 on an RBI single from Vazquez.
Gary Sanchez doubled before moving to third with a single from Gilberto Celestino with no outs in fifth. A sacrificial fly from Luis Arráez sent Sanchez home to get Minnesota within 5-3.
Archer allowed eight hits and five carries in four innings.
Twins: Following OF Byron Buxton’s injury, Minnesota signed fast OF Billy Hamilton to a minor-league deal Thursday. Hamilton had seven stolen bases in just 20 games with the Marlins this season and 321 in his 10-year career.
Astros: Ryan Pressly closer to injured list Thursday with neck spasms, retroactive to Monday. … RHP Seth Martinez was recalled from Triple-A Sugar Land to take his place on the list. …OF Chas McCormick is likely to miss a couple of games after dislocating his right pinky finger on Wednesday night. …OF Kyle Tucker missed the game with a sore left foot.
Gemini: Joe Ryan (9-6, 3.86 ERA) will start the opener of a series against San Francisco on Friday night against Alex Wood (8-10, 4.54).
Astros: Lance McCullers Jr. (1-1, 2.45) meets Baltimore’s Kyle Bradish (1-5, 6.25) in the first of three games against the Orioles on Friday night.