Musgrove finds groove as Astros blank O’s

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The MLB-best Astros (33-16) have opened up a nine-game lead in the American League West over the Rangers and Angels.

The Astros carried a 2-0 lead into the seventh against Orioles starter Kevin Gausman on solo homers by Jake Marisnick in the third inning and Carlos Beltran in the sixth. Devenski allowed three hits to start the eighth before coming back to get three three consecutive outs against the top of Baltimore’s order.

Marisnick's solo moonshot

Devenski high-wire act saves day: After not being able to muster much against Musgrove, the Orioles rallied in the eighth against relief ace Devenski with three consecutive hits, including two infield singles. But Devenski wriggled his way out of the jam by striking out Seth Smith and getting Adam Jones and Manny Machado to fly out and end the inning.

Devenski gets out of trouble

Strike ’em out, throw ’em out: Musgrove had allowed just two one-out doubles through five innings when J.J. Hardy led off the sixth by reaching on a dribbler down the third-base line. Musgrove struck out Smith as catcher Evan Gattis threw out Hardy trying to steal second for a double play, and retired Jones on the next pitch to quickly end the inning.

Musgrove, Gattis turn two

Beltran’s home run was the 426th of his career, which moves him into a tie with Billy Williams for 50th all-time. Mike Piazza is next on the list with 427.

Beltran's long solo homer

Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast.

Christian Boutwell is a reporter for based in Houston and covered the Orioles on Friday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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