MILWAUKEE (AP) — Houston had a tough night. Zack Greinke was disappointed after getting beat, and all the Astros were concerned about losing teammate George Springer.
Greinke lost his first game since joining Houston, giving up a three-run homer to Eric Thames as the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Astros 4-2 Tuesday night for a split of the interleague series.
Greinke watched Springer track a long fly ball off the bat of Ryan Braun and make a great catch, colliding hard with the padded wall in center. Then, Greinke started to worry.
Springer immediately fell to the ground and grabbed the back of his head after losing his glove. He stayed down as his teammates gathered around. Astros personnel attended to him, and after a lengthy delay, he sat upright in the cart driven by emergency attendants.
“It was bad,” Greinke said of what he saw. “I was just hoping there’s nothing serious because a lot of things can go wrong when that stuff happens. So, it was not a good feeling, really.”
Astros manager AJ Hinch said that Springer was being evaluated for a head injury and was listed as day-to-day. Springer was scheduled to travel back to Houston with the team. He sat at his locker draped in towels and was talking with his teammates.
“It was a great catch,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said of the play. “I haven’t seen replays, but he obviously went down very awkwardly and scary. I was glad he was able to get up and was able to kind of get off under his own power, but it was very scary.”
Greinke (4-1) stumbled for the first time in six starts since being traded from Arizona on July 31st. He allowed four runs on eight hits over six innings. He came in 4-0 in his five previous starts.
Greinke’s loss follows two strong pitching performances by the Astros. Gerrit Cole had 14 strikeouts in a 3-2 win Monday, and that followed Justin Verlander’s third career no-hitter on Sunday.
“They were taking good at bats the whole game,” Greinke said. “They hit a lot of balls hard. Bad pitch to Thames, but they did a pretty good job. We played pretty good overall, but their at bats were just better against me.”
Thames teed off on a 1-0 pitch Greinke left over the middle of the plate for his 20th home run of the season, a three-shot to deep right center, in the bottom of the third. Ryan Braun had an RBI hit that tied the game and set the stage for Thames.
Josh Hader handled the ninth for his 28th save in 34 chances. The win kept the Brewers four games out of the second wild-card spot.
The Astros (90-50) fell one game behind the New York Yankees (91-49) for the best record in the majors. The Yankees beat the Texas Rangers 10-1.
Alex Bregman hit his 33rd homer, a solo shot off Lyles in the sixth, extending his single-season career-best for home runs.
Abraham Toro tripled and scored on Josh Reddick’s base hit in the second as the Astros took a 1-0 lead.
LYLES CREDITS HIS CATCHERS
Jordan Lyles (10-8) made his first career start against the club that made him the 38th pick of the 2008 major league draft. The right-hander allowed two runs on six hits and struck out two over 6 1/3 innings for his fifth win in seven starts since being acquired on July 29th from Pittsburgh for right-hander Cody Ponce. Lyles has nine quality starts overall.
“I think a lot, maybe a majority, has to do with Yas(mani Grandal) and Manny (Piña),” Lyles said. “Just trusting their fingers, just trusting their pitch framing. Putting me in good situations at the right times.”
Greinke singled in the fifth for his 14th career base hit. He inexplicably broke for second as Lyles concentrated on pitching to Springer. Lyles turned and fired to first baseman Thames who tagged Greinke out.
“I was just trying to steal,” Greinke said. “I got nine career steals. I was trying to get 10. I don’t know if I’ll ever get there now. That might have been my last chance.”
Astros: OF Kyle Tucker batted for Springer and replaced him in the outfield. … 2B José Altuve was supposed to get the game off, but he pinch hit in the eighth, flied out and stayed in the game.
Brewers: 3B Mike Moustakas (left wrist/hand injury) came out of Monday’s game in the 10th inning in a double switch after going 0 for 4 with two strikeouts. He missed four games last week with the same problem and was out of Tuesday night’s lineup.
ASTROS ROSTER MOVES
Houston reinstated minor league LHP Reymin Guduan from the suspended list and designated him for assignment.
Astros: LHP Wade Miley (13-4, 3.06 ERA) looks for his eighth consecutive victory when he starts against the Seattle Mariners on Thursday in the opener of an eight-game homestand.
Brewers: RHP Chase Anderson (6-4, 4.58 ERA) faces the visiting Chicago Cubs on Thursday. He is 5-5 with a 3.27 ERA in 14 career games, including 13 starts, and took a 7-1 loss Friday at Wrigley Field.
TOP PHOTO: Milwaukee Brewers’ Eric Thames is congratulated in the dugout after his three-run home run against the Houston Astros during the third inning of a baseball game Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2019, in Milwaukee. (AP Photo/Jeffrey Phelps)
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