Diamondbacks 3, Astros 1
HOUSTON (AP)—Chris Young had a homecoming to remember and picked up the perfect Mother’s Day gift along the way.
Young, a 23-year-old rookie center fielder, went to high school a short drive from Minute Maid Park and lives in Houston in the offseason. He had his own cheering section at Friday’s game—52 family members and friends about 20 rows up from the Diamondbacks’ dugout.
“It feels great to have so much support, to come back home and have so many people that are proud of you,” said Young. “It felt good to look into the stands and see all the support I had.”
The not-so-friendly Astros’ fans in left field threw his seventh-inning home run ball back onto the field. Young had the good sense to collect it as a memento to give to his mother, Carolyn Reece, who was among the 52.
“I normally just get flowers,” he said. “But that’s a great plan.”
Webb (3-2) did the rest, allowing five hits, striking out 10 and walking one. He took a shutout into the ninth, but Carlos Lee led off with a double to right-center, went to third on Luke Scott’s grounder to first and scored on Hunter Pence’s groundout.
Lee went 3-for-4 and improved to 8-of-15 all-time against Webb.
“Carlos Lee is a tough hitter and he was getting the bat on the ball all night,” said Webb, who threw 118 pitches. “It’s tough to lose the shutout. To get the complete game and the win is nice, too.”
Webb finished off the Astros by striking out Adam Everett for the third time.
Scott also doubled for the Astros, who were held to one run at home for the third time in seven games.
Sampson got hit hard from the start, giving up extra-base hits in each of the first four innings.
With one out in the third, Young hammered Sampson’s 2-0 pitch into the Crawford Boxes in left field.
Young had visited Minute Maid Park before, but only to see a college mini-tournament that the ballpark hosts every year. He’d never actually set foot on the playing surface until Friday.
“It’s weird playing on this field,” Young said. “It was a great time to have a good game.”
Webb retired 10 consecutive Astros, six on strikeouts, after walking Scott with no outs in the second inning.
Tracy doubled again in the sixth, but Lee threw him out at the plate after Chris Snyder singled to left.
Young made up for that missed opportunity in the seventh, launching a 1-2 pitch from Sampson into the balcony in left-center, igniting more loud cheers from his fan club.
“He had a good day,” Sampson said, “and I had an off day. I didn’t have my good stuff.”
Neither did the Astros. They averaged five runs in three victories in Cincinnati this week, but were back to their offensively inept selves against Webb.
“We got him on the ropes two or three times, but he worked his way out of it every time,” Lee said. “We did manage to put some guys on base, but it didn’t do us any good.”
Houston’s frustration boiled over in the seventh, when Everett struck out on a borderline check swing. Manager Phil Garner trotted out to protest and home-plate umpire Dale Scott ejected him. The inning ended when Mark Loretta, pinch hitting for Sampson, grounded into a double play.
“He threw really well,” said Ensberg. “The ball was really sinking. It was just all over the place.”
Young had his second two-homer game in 12 days. He also hit a pair in the Diamondbacks’ 9-1 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers on April 30. … Tracy doubled three times, tying the Arizona record. … Astros RHP Rick White, activated from the 15-day disabled list on Friday, retired the six batters he faced in the eighth and ninth innings. … Berkman went 0-4, ending a 10-game hitting streak.