HOUSTON -- It wasn't easy, and it came against the reigning American League Cy Young Award winner, but top prospectJose Berrios picked up his first Major League victory with the Twins' 6-2 win over the Astros at Minute Maid Park.
Berrios, facing off against lefty Dallas Keuchel, went 5 1/3 innings, allowing two runs on three hits and five walks with eight strikeouts in his second career start. The Twins' victory snapped a 17-game win streak at home for Keuchel, but Berrios clearly outpitched his counterpart on Monday night despite having trouble with his command early.
"With Keuchel pitching at home and us starting a guy in his second start in the big leagues, it didn't look very good on paper," manager Paul Molitor said. "With Jose it seems like early in the game, he fights himself to establish his pitches. But it seemed like after we scored there, it really energized him. He seemed to up his game a little bit."
Berrios, ranked as the No. 16 overall prospect by MLBPipeline.com, felt more comfortable as the game went on, and said it was an honor to pick up his first win against a pitcher of Keuchel's caliber.
At 21 years and 341 days, Berrios became the youngest Twins pitcher to get a win since Francisco Liriano in 2005.
"With the matchup, I knew I had to compete a lot tonight," Berrios said. "I wanted to get my first Major League win, and that's what I was able to do. It's awesome. To help my team win, I'm happy about that."
Berrios showed off his electric stuff yet again, as his fastball reached as high as 94 mph, and he mixed in his 85-mph changeup and 82-mph curveball. He was able to get 11 swings and misses, including seven with his four-seam fastball, using his velocity to blow by hitters.
"He was unbelievable," catcher John Ryan Murphy said. "He's only going to get better. He's an ultra-competitor. His stuff is electric. He's only going to get better, because his work ethic is through the roof."