ss defense (132.2 yards per game) and third in
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HOUSTON -- Down two starting infielders, the Astros did one thing they have struggled to do this season -- finish off the Rangers.Jose Altuve and Alex Bregman both left with injuries, but George Springer and Teoscar Hernandez homered and the Houston Astros helped their fading playoff hopes with an 8-4 win over the Texas Rangers on Wednesday night.I really like the way we fought back, even after they scored the run in the first, Houston manager A.J. Hinch said. We keep fighting and we finished tonights game a lot better obviously.Altuve exited after the fourth with right oblique discomfort, and Bregman was pulled in the sixth with right hamstring discomfort.Neither player was available to speak after the game.Theyre getting looked at, getting all the tests, Hinch said. Theyre going to have a full evaluation before we know anything. Im not optimistic about Friday for either one of them.Houston snapped a three-game losing streak and closed within 3 1/2 games of Toronto for the second AL wild card.Hernandez gave the Astros a 3-1 lead with a two-run homer off the facade in left-center in the second. Springer led off the first with his 27th home run to tie it at 1.The Astros got just their fourth win in 19 games against the Rangers this season.It feels good to beat these guys, Houston starter Joe Musgrove said. We have put up tough battles and given everything we had, and they have found ways to sneak out wins in the later innings. To have an offensive burst in the later innings like that, is nice.After the Rangers closed within 5-4, Marwin Gonzalez hit a two-run single and Jake Marisnick had an RBI single in the eighth to extend the lead to four.I was just trying to put the ball in play with a flyball or whatever, Gonzalez said.Musgrove (3-4) allowed three runs and five hits with seven strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings. The rookie right-hander retired 14 of 15 batters at one point.Its always easy to pitch when you have some runs on the board, Musgrove said. It gives you the freedom to challenge guys a little more and attack guys in the zone.Derek Holland (7-8) allowed five runs and seven hits in 5 1/3 innings. Holland lost his second straight and has given up at least four runs in each start.It looked like he seemed to fight himself in the delivery a little bit, Texas manager Jeff Banister said. Once he settled in I thought he threw some quality pitches, got some quality outs. Really I think the toughest part is three of the four inherited runners of our bullpen we allowed those to score. We cant have that.The left-handed Holland was announced as the starter after Tuesday nights game, with original starter Yu Darvish moved to start Saturday.INJURED INFIELDERSAltuve entered leading the AL in hitting with a .340 average to go with 24 home runs and 94 RBI. The second baseman also leads the AL in hits with 196. He was 1 for 2 with a double before being lifted.Bregman, a rookie third baseman batting .260 with eight homers, limped into third in the sixth inning after stopping and starting on Tyler Whites groundout. Bregman tried to walk it off, but he was lifted for pinch-runner Tony Kemp and limped off the field.SUPER UTILITY MAN GONZALEZGonzalez played three positions while the banged-up Astros shuffled their infield. He started out at first base, moved to second base following Altuves exit and then went to third base following Bregmans departure. After the seventh, Gonzalez moved back to second. Gonzalez has also played shortstop and in the outfield this season.SPRINGER TIES BIGGIOSpringer got his eighth leadoff homer of the season, tying Craig Biggio for the club record, which the Hall of Famer set in 2001.UP NEXTRangers: LHP Cole Hamels (14-5) makes his 30th start of the season Friday night against Oakland. The left-hander allowed two runs in six innings in his last start Saturday against the Angels.Astros: RHP Collin McHugh (10-10) makes his 30th start of the season Friday in Seattle looking for his fourth straight win. McHugh is 8-3 with a 4.39 ERA in his career against the Mariners, including a 3-0 record this season with a 1.50 ERA. Riley Reiff Jersey . General manager Jarmo Kekalainen told Aaron Portzline of The Columbus Dispatch on Friday that he wants to see Gaboriks contributions go beyond the scoresheet before considering a long-term deal for the soon-to-be unrestricted free agent. Pat Elflein Jersey . The 18th player to shoot 60 on the tour, Jamieson settled for par on the final hole when his 15-foot birdie chip grazed the edge of the hole and stayed out. After opening with rounds of 66 and 73 to make the cut by a stroke, he had 11 birdies in the bogey-free round. http://www.officialauthenticvikingsshop.com/authentic-mike-remmers-jersey.html .B. - Sebastien Auger made 44 saves as the Saint John Sea Dogs edged the visiting Acadie-Bathurst Titan 2-1 on Saturday in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action. Will Sutton Jersey . Fernandez, coached in Toronto by former two-time Olympic silver medallist Brian Orser, scored 267.11 points and is the first champion to successfully defend since Russias Evgeny Plushenko in 2005 and 2006. Sharrif Floyd Jersey . For the Wild it was their first win of the season and they now have a record of 1-1-2 while the Jets fall to 2-2. Jets start a six game home stand Friday with another divisional game, home to the Dallas Stars. Halfway through their first seasons at their schools, coaches Justin Fuente of Virginia Tech and Dino Babers of Syracuse are headed in different directions.Fuente seems to have picked up where Frank Beamer left off: the Hokies (4-1, 2-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) are ranked 17th and lead the Coastal Division going into Saturdays game against the Orange in the Carrier Dome. Syracuse (2-4, 0-2 ACC) has lost four of five and faces three ranked teams in the second half of the season, its chance at the postseason seemingly out of reach already.Theres a long season ahead of us, Fuente said. We can take pride in winning a couple games. Theres nothing wrong with that. But youve got to move past those things.Moving past the Orange once was a struggle when both teams were in the Big East -- they split their 12 meetings before Virginia Tech left for the ACC in 2004. The Orange bolted for the ACC three years ago and this will be the teams first meeting as conference members.The Orange strives to thrive on offense. The Hokies have been dominating opponents with a stifling defense thats become the perfect complement to an efficient offense.Youre talking about a defense thats ranked in the top five, Babers said. And then when you watch the D-linemen redirect and get after the football, these guys are running down screens, wide receiver screens, running back screens from behind, pressuring quarterbacks. Its fun to watch them play, but its not fun to know that youve got to play them.The last time Virginia Tech won in the Carrier Dome was 2000, when quarterback Michael Vick overcame eight sacks by an Orange defense led by Dwight Freeney in a 22-14 victory.Other things to know for Syracuse vs. Virginia Tech:ROLL TECH: The Hokies have had three straight dominant defensive performances -- against East Carolina, Boston College and former No. 17 North Carolina -- outscoring those three foes 137-20. The lone loss under Fuente came against then-No. 17 Tennessee -- a 45-24 setback in the second gaame of the season, played at Bristol Motor Speedway before college footballs largest crowd (156,990).ddddddddddddFive Tech turnovers, all fumbles, spelled doom as Tennessee scored 31 straight points to overcome a 14-0 deficit.I think the Tennessee game was a fairly good wake-up call for us, Fuente said. You dont give yourself a chance to win when you do those types of things. I think that helped us in terms of maybe getting our kids attention a little bit. Now, weve just got to keep it.WIDEOUT WONDER: Syracuses Amba Etta-Tawo is fifth (8.5) in the nation in receptions per game and still leads everybody in receiving yards per game (146) despite coming off his worst showing of a breakout season -- four catches for 34 yards last week in a 28-9 loss at Wake Forest. The Orange failed to score in the second half of that game, which was buffeted by Hurricane Matthew.EVANS EFFICIENCY: Hokies quarterback Jerod Evans leads the ACC in passing efficiency, having thrown 15 touchdown passes with one interception. That one pick came on a pass that hit top receiver Isaiah Ford in the hands, and he juggled it right into the hands of a defender. If the Hokies passing game remains essentially mistake-free, they will be hard to beat.SOMETHING HAS TO GIVE: The Hokies rank second in the FBS in pass defense (132.2 yards per game) and third in total defense (237.6 ypg). Syracuse ranks second in the ACC and 12th nationally in passing offense, averaging 336.3 ypg.THROW IT: Syracuse QB Eric Dungey is second in the league with an average of 314 passing yards per game. He might be third had the Hokies not held No. 3 Mitch Trubisly at UNC to 58 passing yards last week in a 34-3 victory played in a driving rain.---AP Sports Writer Hank Kurz in Virginia contributed.---AP College Football Website: www.collegefootball.ap.org---Follow Kekis on Twitter: www.twitter.com/Greek1947 Wholesale Hoodies NFL Shirts Outlet Jerseys NFL Wholesale Cheap NFL Jerseys Free Shipping Wholesale Jerseys Cheap Cheap NFL Jerseys China Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys China Cheap NFL Jerseys ' ' '