HOUSTON (AP) — Logan Morrison homered twice and tied a career high with five RBIs to help the Seattle Mariners cruise to an 8-1 win over the Houston Astros on Saturday.
The Mariners jumped on Collin McHugh (6-3) for five runs in the first inning, a day after Houston roughed up Felix Hernandez for eight runs in the opening frame in a 10-0 win on Friday night.
Morrison connected for his first homer since May 12, a two-out, three-run shot in the first that made it 5-0.
He didn’t have to wait long for another one, launching a two-run drive in the third to almost the exact same spot in right-center field. It was the third multihomer run game of his career.
Rookie starter Mike Montgomery (1-1) allowed six hits and one run while walking three in six innings. He became the second player in franchise history to pitch at least six innings while allowing two earned runs or fewer in each of his first three career starts and the first since Bob Stoddard in 1981.
McHugh allowed nine hits and tied a career high with eight runs in a season-low three innings.
It was a rare offensive outburst for the Mariners, who entered the game last in the American League in runs scored and having scored three runs or less in 15 of their last 16 games.
The Astros were without All-Star second baseman Jose Altuve, who sat out with a strained right hamstring after injuring it the night before. He is listed as day to day.
Morrison’s big game extended his hitting streak at Minute Maid Park to 18 games and Saturday was his first five-RBI game since June 19, 2012.
The Mariners got things going with a single by Austin Jackson with one out in the first. Robinson Cano followed with a double and a single by Nelson Cruz made it 1-0. Kyle Seager had a sacrifice fly, Mark Trumbo singled and Morrison homered.
Jackson’s RBI single in the third inning pushed the lead to 8-0.
The Astros, who have scored two runs or less in seven of their last nine games, made it 8-1 on an RBI double by George Springer in the fifth.
Roberto Hernandez, who has started 11 games this season, struck out five in four scoreless innings for the Astros in his first relief appearance this year after McHugh’s early exit.
Danny Farquhar, who was recalled from Triple-A Tacoma on Saturday, walked two in two scoreless innings for the Mariners.
Astros: Altuve probably won’t play on Sunday, but the Astros don’t expect him to be out too long. … Starter Brad Peacock (left intercostal strain) had a setback after a rehabilitation start at Double-A Corpus Christi and will return to Houston to be re-evaluated. “I feel bad for him,” manager A.J. Hinch said. “I’m not sure what it means, and I don’t want to rush to too many judgments until we talk to him. To have this rehab stint interrupted is certainly not something he wants or something we want.”
Houston rookie Lance McCullers opposes left-hander Roenis Elias when the teams wrap up the three-game series on Sunday. McCullers has struck out 36 batters in his first five starts to tie a franchise record for most strikeouts in a player’s first five games.