Alex Bregman, Kyle Tucker and Chas McCormick homered during a five-run first inning as the Houston Astros defeated the host Miami Marlins 12-5 in the rubber match of a three-game series on Wednesday night.
Bregman and Tucker each drove in three runs, helping Justin Verlander (8-6) earn the victory. Verlander struggled through five innings, allowing five runs (four earned) on nine hits with two walks and two strikeouts.
The Astros, who never trailed, are now 10-5 this month.
Jake Burger went 3-for-4 with two RBIs and two runs to lead Miami.
Jesus Luzardo (8-8) took the loss, giving up six runs (five earned) on eight hits in 3 2/3 innings. He walked three and struck out three.
Three of Houston's first five batters of the first went deep to open the scoring.
With one out, Bregman and Tucker hit back-to-back solo shots. Yordan Alvarez then singled, and McCormick followed with a 435-foot homer to center to make it 4-0.
The Astros capped the rally when Jon Singleton walked and came home on Mauricio Dubon's double down the third base line. However, Dubon tried to stretch his double into a triple and was thrown out at third to end the inning.
Miami scored twice in the bottom of the first thanks to a rally that started with singles by Luis Arraez and Josh Bell. With two outs, Burger stroked a two-run double that rolled to the wall in left center.
Houston made it 6-2 in the third as Alvarez reached on shortstop Jon Berti's throwing error and later scored on Jeremy Pena's single.
Miami loaded the bases with one out in the fourth on singles by Burger, Jesus Sanchez and Nick Fortes. Houston nearly escaped the jam on a Berti grounder, but Pena made an errant relay throw to first, allowing two Marlins to score to make it 6-4.
Miami cut its deficit to 6-5 in the fifth when Burger singled and scored on Bryan De La Cruz's double.
But Houston broke the game open with a six-run seventh inning that included a two-run double by Bregman and a two-run single by Tucker.
—Field Level Media