ARLINGTON -- Astros manager A.J. Hinch said earlier in the day his team would have to play a complete game to beat their nemesis, the Rangers. That's what made Monday night's 6-5 loss at Globe Life Park so frustrating for everyone wearing orange and blue.
The Astros made a couple of defensive miscues in the first inning, an inning in which the Rangers scored three times, and shortstop Carlos Correa admitted he should have turned an inning-ending double play in the ninth. Instead, Rougned Odor hit a game-winning double off the left-field wall to score Adrian Beltre from first base to improve Texas to 7-0 this season against Houston.
"It's very symbolic for losing a close game, specifically in this ballgame or against anybody," Hinch said. "It's nothing against the Rangers. You've got to play complete games to beat good teams, and they're a good team over there. They took advantage of one more mistake than we did. I'm really proud of the guys; we battled. But one run short."
With the game tied in the ninth and a runner at first and one out, Beltre hit a grounder that Correa moved to his right to field. He hesitated briefly getting the ball out of his glove before getting the out at second, but the relay throw to first was late. Beltre reached with two outs, setting the stage for Odor's heroics.
"It has to be a double-play ball," Correa said. "It got caught in my glove a little bit. I was still able to get the out at second, but not the double play. But still, we played since sloppy since the game started. A couple of situational hitting [spots] we missed, a couple of ground balls, we didn't get to a base and stuff like that, and we ended up losing the game. We have to go back out there tomorrow, focused, and regroup and play good baseball."
Reliever Ken Giles thought he had escaped the inning.
"It was a routine ground ball," he said. "[I] got a little too excited to turn the double play to end the inning. But I've got to shut it down no matter what."
In the first, Ian Desmond reached first base for an infield hit when first baseman Marwin Gonzalez fielded a grounder and bobbled it briefly. He looked to home to see if Jurickson Profar was breaking from third, but when he decided to go to first no one was covering. Pitcher Mike Fiers wasn't there because he had briefly ducked to get out of the way of a possible throw home by Gonzalez.
"I don't know what's going on," Fiers said. "I can't give them too much credit this game. There were a bunch of bloop hits. They battled me on some pitches. But we just played bad baseball. That's pretty much what it comes down to."
Later in the inning, Gonzalez scurried back to first to field a grounder hit to second baseman Jose Altuve, but he couldn't find the base with his foot. The Astros challenged the play, but lost a replay review that Hinch said probably shouldn't have happened.
"We were grasping for any way to try to rescue through that inning," he said. "We were making a few too many mistakes and then compounded it with a replay [challenge] that probably shouldn't have been issued."
Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.