Clout 9: Astros pound Jays in relentless 4th

Clout 9: Astros pound Jays in relentless 4th

HOUSTON -- The Astros took out three days of offensive frustration in one inning in Friday night's 16-7 win over the Blue Jays.

After scoring only seven runs over consecutive losses to the Rays their previous three games, the Astros erupted for nine runs in the fourth inning of the series opener, including homers by Alex Bregman and Yuli Gurriel, to take a 12-3 lead.

The Astros, who were playing without Jose Altuve (rest), Carlos Correa (injury) and George Springer (injury), were leading, 3-2, before sending a season-high 15 batters to the plate in the fourth.

Gonzalez's three-run jack

"We had 14 out of 15 excellent at-bats," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. "We've had some big innings this year, and that's a good one. We didn't really need a lot of help from them. They didn't make errors. It wasn't a sloppy inning, by any means. It was 14 of 15 really good at-bats. A fun night to explode."

It was the third time this season the Astros have scored at least nine runs in an inning. They're the only team in baseball to do that.

"You don't expect to have those innings every day, but it's definitely something you build off of," said Tyler White, who had an RBI single and an RBI double in the inning and later added two homers. "It's a lot of fun. You don't hardly ever seen nine-run innings. I don't know how many we scored with two outs, but we had two outs for a while and we continued to hit and continued to put good swings on up there and continued to see pitches."

The inning began when Carlos Beltran singled and Brian McCann walked. White's double scored Beltran, and Blue Jays starting pitcher Cesar Valdez was pulled after striking out Jake Marisnick. Toronto reliever Matt Dermody got Derek Fisher on an RBI groundout that made it 5-2, but the next nine Houston batters reached with two outs.

Bregman's opposite-field homer

Bregman hit a two-run homer to right for a 7-2 lead, and Marwin Gonzalez followed a Josh Reddick single and Gurriel walk with a homer to right off Mike Bolsinger that pushed the lead to 10-2. White and Marisnick had RBI hits later in the inning, and Bregman came to bat with the bases loaded and two outs.

Bregman just missed his second homer of the inning with a 377-foot flyout to left field that was caught at the wall by Steve Pearce for the final out.

"I hit it too high, to be honest," Bregman said. "I hit it right on the barrel and squared it up as best I could, but just kind of hit it straight up. I was just fortunate enough to put a good few good swings on the ball today. I was happy with the day and easily could have been 3-for-5."

That wasn't the Astros' biggest inning of the season. They scored 11 runs in the eighth inning against the Twins on May 29 in a game that, coincidentally, was started by Brad Peacock, who also got the nod on Friday. The club record for runs in an inning is 14, tallied in Cincinnati on Aug. 3, 1989.

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.