The Astros slugged five home runs, including back-to-back shots by Matt Dominguez and Chris Carter in the ninth inning of what was a tied game, to beat the White Sox, 10-8, in a wild game Monday night at U.S. Cellular Field.
"Exactly the way we drew it up," said Astros manager Bo Porter, whose team has won four out of five games from the White Sox this year.
Astros pitcher Jordan Lyles, a starter who was pressed into duty because closers Chia-Jen Lo and Josh Fields were unavailable, struck out Avisail Garcia looking on a 3-2 fastball down the middle of the plate to strand the bases loaded to end the game.
"I fell behind, 3-0, and started throwing the ball over the plate and luckily he took the last pitch and they called it a strike," Lyles said.
It was the first career save for Lyles and the first career win for rookie David Martinez, who allowed three runs and five hits in 2 2/3 innings. Martinez coughed up three runs in a five-run sixth to allow the White Sox to take an 8-7 lead before throwing a scoreless seventh and eighth.
"David did a great job of keeping it right there," Porter said. "He was our long guy today and you get in that situation, even though they scored the five runs and it was a tied ballgame, it was basically his ballgame until we took the lead."
Carter, who was drafted by the White Sox, had the third multi-homer game of his career, giving him 25 homers for the season. Red-hot Jason Castro and Brett Wallace also homered for the Astros, who improved to 7-6 in their last 13 games.
"They set out to pick each other up," Porter said. "You could never sense [panic] in our dugout and it's been like that all year."
The game was tied at 8 entering the ninth when White Sox closer Addison Reed struck out the first two batters he faced before Dominguez and Carter provided back-to-back shots to put the Astros ahead.
"I felt I had everything working and made a couple bad pitches," Reed said. "I hung a slider to Dominguez and he made me pay for it. It was nothing with fatigue or anything like that. I felt great. I just made a couple bad pitches."
The Astros jumped out to a 6-1 lead in the fifth inning, thanks in part to three homers. Castro clubbed his 18th in the second inning, Wallace hit his 11th in the fourth and Carter hit a tape-measure, two-run shot in the fifth.
"It's great to beat the team that drafted you and traded you away, to come back here and do that here," Carter said.
The White Sox slowly chipped away against Astros starter Brett Oberholtzer, who lasted 5 1/3 innings in the shortest start of his career.
"I battled myself more so tonight than I ever have being up here in the big leagues. You know what, that's going to happen," Oberholtzer said. "I'm not going to have great outings all the time, great results. Tonight was a testament of myself battling and trying to make quality pitches, even though I didn't feel that great tonight."
Jeff Keppinger led off the fifth with a solo homer, and L.J. Hoes dropped a fly ball at the wall in right field off the bat of Gordon Beckham to allow Alejandro De Aza to score and cut the lead to 6-3. Adam Dunn hit his 30th homer in the sixth to get the White Sox to within two runs, 7-5.
Martinez relieved Oberholtzer and gave up hits to the first four batters he faced, three of which scored to give the White Sox an 8-7 lead. The tying run came home on a balk, and De Aza's fourth hit of the night scored Josh Phegley with the go-ahead run.
"You look at the five-run inning and for these guys to respond the way they've responded, it speaks to the resilience of the ballclub," Porter said. "I couldn't be more proud of them."
The Astros tied the game at 8 in the seventh on an RBI single by Carter, which scored Dominguez from second base one pitch after he advanced on a wild pitch.
"The game was back and forth and it was good to win and keep that momentum going," Carter said.