"Just good play," Springer said his teammates told him. "You're
out there trying to compete and just trying to help the team and
just trying to make the play."
Springer then led off the eighth with a bomb over the left-field
wall, homering in his fourth straight game and scoring five runs as
the Houston Astros clubbed the Kansas City Royals 9-2 on Monday
"I was able to hit it hard and it was obviously good because it adds
on in the eighth inning that helps put it out of reach somewhat,"
Hosmer could not believe Springer caught that ball on the warning
track in front of the bullpen gate.
"Wow, I wasn't even thinking anybody could catch that," Hosmer said.
"I glanced at the ball and glanced at him and then looked back. I
kept my eyes on the ball and he got there. That's impressive."
Springer was equally impressive at the plate.
Springer went 4-for-4 with three RBIs, extending his hitting streak
to eight games. Since hitting his first home run on May 8 at
Detroit, Springer has eight home runs, 19 RBIs and a .323 batting
average in 19 games.
"We're not shocked," Astros manager Bo Porter said of what Springer
can do. "At the same time, he got off to a slow start and the game
was kind of fast. He kind of pumped the brakes and now once he
slowed the game down, you're starting to see his natural talent
pretty much just take over."
Springer drove a 2-0 Louis Coleman pitch over the left-field fence
in the eighth for his fifth home run in four games, becoming the
first Astros rookie to homer in four consecutive games.
Shortstop Marvin Gonzalez also had four hits, a career high, as the
Astros stroked a season-best 16 hits.
Right-hander Scott Feldman (3-2) picked up the victory, allowing two
runs on eight hits over six innings. In his previous two starts,
Feldman was roughed up for 12 runs and 19 hits in nine innings.
The night, however, belonged to Springer.
"He's a pretty entertaining guy to watch," Feldman said.
Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain went 4-for-4, the fifth four-hit
game of his career and his second this year.
The Astros took advantage of right-hander Yordano Ventura's wildness
to score two runs on one hit in the first. After second baseman Jose
Altuve led off the game with a single, Ventura walked Springer and
center fielder Dexter Fowler to load the bases with no outs. Altuve
scored on catcher Jason Castro's groundout. Third baseman Matt
Dominguez's sacrifice fly brought home Springer.
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After Ventura retired the first two batters in the second, the next
five Astros reached base. Gonzalez started it with a double to
right-center. After Altuve walked, Springer knocked in both with a
double off the center-field wall. Fowler singled home Springer,
making it 5-0.
Ventura left with two outs in the third inning due to discomfort in
his right elbow and he will undergo an MRI exam Tuesday. He was
replaced by right-hander Michael Mariot.
The Astros tacked on a run in the fourth. Springer led off with a
double off the wall in right-center and advanced to third on a
Mariot balk. After Fowler walked, Springer scored when Castro
grounded into a double play.
Cain's two-out single in the fourth scored left fielder Alex Gordon
for the first Kansas City run off Feldman.
The Astros upped their advantage to 7-1 in the fifth when Gonzalez's
two-out single scored designated hitter Alex Presley, who had
NOTES: The Astros recalled LF Robbie Grossman from Triple-A Oklahoma
City, where he was hitting .299 in 34 games. OF L.J. Hoes was
optioned to Oklahoma City. ... Royals 2B Omar Infante came off the
disabled list and doubled in his first at-bat. RHP Casey Coleman was
optioned to Triple-A Omaha. ... Kansas City LHP Bruce Chen, who is
out with a bulging disc, threw 25 pitches in a simulated game. ...
Astros RHP Brad Peacock, who skipped a start due to forearm
tightness, threw a bullpen session Monday. He is penciled in for a
Thursday start against the Baltimore Orioles.
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