Houston Astros Defeat Washington Nationals in First Spring Training Game

Jason CardwellCorrespondent IFebruary 25, 2009

From astros.mlb.com

Stros at the plate: “Jason Smith put the Astros on the board first, driving in Darin Erstad with an RBI triple in the fifth frame. Michael Bourn knocked a double in the sixth to drive in Drew Sutton. Mark Saccomanno tripled to lead off the seventh and scored when center fielder Roger Bernadina overthrew home plate after fielding Humberto Quintero’s fly ball.

"Reggie Abercrombie drove in two with a double later in that inning, and Chris Johnson knocked a solo homer in the eighth”

Stros on the mound: “Mike Hampton turned a rough beginning into a solid outing, allowing no runs over two scoreless frames. He hit the first batter he faced and walked the next two to load the bases, but he struck out Austin Kearns and coaxed a double play from Jesus Flores to end the inning.

"Russ Ortiz, a fifth-starter hopeful, allowed one hit over two innings”

Sounds like Hampton got off to a shaky start but settled down.  From JJO of the Houston Chronicle, Hampton on his own performance and Cooper on Hampton:

“My arm felt good,” Hampton said after throwing two hitless innings. “My body felt good. Obviously location wasn’t where it needs to be, but all in all I felt good out there. Pitches and location will come. I got through with no hits, no runs. It wasn’t pretty at times, but I got there.”

“Mike seemed to be just a little bit tentative early, missing the zone a little bit,” Cooper said. “But then after…the first three (guys) he started to pitch a little bit and was real sharp. Russ, I thought, threw the ball really well.”

Apparently Hampton’s start was delayed due to the governor of Florida running late.

Houston’s Spring Training Record 1-0-0

So far so good.

Lance Berkman, Miguel Tejada, Carlos Lee, and Hunter Pence all sat out of today’s game.  Berkman, Tejada, and Lee will all play tomorrow.

Here is the lineup Cooper used for the game today:

Matsui 2b
Bourn cf
Pence rf
Blum 3b
Michaels lf
Erstad dh
Boone 1b
Smith ss
Towles c

Houston will play the Atlanta Braves tomorrow at Disney starting at 1:05 ET.  Roy Oswalt will make the start.