- Associated Press - Sunday, June 19, 2016

HOUSTON (AP) - The bottom of Houston’s order is starting to heat up and it helped the Astros to a lopsided win over the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday.

The Astros got homers and two RBIs each from seventh and eighth hitters Evan Gattis and Luis Valbuena to power the 6-0 victory.

“The more production we get out of there the better we feel as a team offense,” manager A.J. Hinch said. “We don’t have to wait for one of the big three at the top of the order to do something to get us on the board.”

Mike Fiers (5-3) allowed four hits and struck out five in 5 2/3 scoreless innings. He left the game when Jay Bruce’s line drive hit him in the thigh for a single with two outs in the sixth.

“It stung for a little bit, but I was all right,” Fiers said. “I’m just glad it didn’t hit me in the knee or anything. It got me in a good part of the leg. It will be sore for a day, but it will be all right.”

Chris Devenski took over and allowed one hit in 3 1/3 innings to complete the shutout and pick up his first save.

“There really weren’t a lot of opportunities for us to bust ourselves open and get back in that game once we fell down,” Cincinnati manager Bryan Price said. “There was nothing there.”

Finnegan yielded five hits and four runs in five innings to snap a streak of five straight games where he lasted at least six innings.

Gattis drove in a run with a double in the second and Valbuena followed with a single in that inning to put Houston up 2.

Valbuena added a solo home run in the fifth inning off Brandon Finnegan (3-5) and Jose Altuve added a sacrifice fly in that frame. The home run by Gattis came in the seventh to make it 5-0.

Carlos Gomez, who has struggled most of the season, extended his hitting streak to a season-high five games with an RBI double in the eighth.

Danny Worth singled with two outs in the second before scoring on the double by Gattis to make it 1-0. Valbuena followed with his single to center field to push the lead to 2-0.

Fiers plunked Eugenio Suarez to start the fifth before a one-out single by Tucker Barnhart. But the Reds came away empty-handed when Suarez was caught trying to steal third and Fiers struck out Tyler Holt.

Valbuena sent the first pitch of Houston’s fifth into the seats in right field for his eighth homer to make it 3-0. Jake Marisnick walked before George Springer grounded into a force out that left Marisnick out at second. Springer stole second base and took third on a wild pitch before Marwin Gonzalez walked.

Altuve’s sacrifice fly came next to make it 4-0. Billy Hamilton robbed Altuve of extra bases when he ran it down almost to the warning track in center field and dived to grab it. Hamilton jumped up after the catch and got it to Brandon Phillips who threw it to first base to double up Gonzalez at first and limit the damage.

Gattis homered for the second straight day after not getting a hit in the previous six games when he launched a pitch from JC Ramirez to left field to push it to 5-0 in the seventh.

“I hit a really bad patch there, a lot of non-productive at bats there,” Gattis said. “Some bad luck, some bad at-bats, some good pitching, so just glad to get some knocks.”

Marisnick denied Votto of a hit when he sailed through the air to snag his fly ball to left field for the third out of the eighth inning.


Reds: RHP Raisel Iglesias (right shoulder) allowed one hit in one inning of a rehabilitation assignment at Double-A Pensacola on Saturday. … RHP Homer Bailey (right elbow surgery) threw live batting practice at the team’s spring training facility in Arizona on Friday without problems. He will throw live batting practice again on Tuesday.


Reds: Cincinnati has an off day on Monday before Anthony DeSclafani (0-0, 2.08) pitches in the opener of a two-game series at Texas. DeSclafani allowed six hits and four runs in 2 2/3 innings in a 9-8 loss to Atlanta in his last start on Wednesday.

Astros: Doug Fister (7-3, 3.26) will pitch for Houston in the opener of a three-game series with the Los Angeles Angels on Monday. Fister picked up his sixth straight win by allowing five hits and two runs and driving in two runs in 7 1/3 innings of a 5-2 win at St. Louis on Wednesday.

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