- Sports & Recreation
- Jed Lowrie
- Wandy Rodriguez
- Chris Schwinden
By The Sports Xchange May 2, 2012 5:10 PM
HOUSTON -- The Astros could get used to the long ball. The Astros rallied behind Chris Johnson's first career multi-homer game and Wandy Rodriguez's solid start to beat the New York Mets, 8-1, on Wednesday afternoon for their first series sweep of the season. Johnson gave the Astros a 3-0 lead in the second inning with his first home run of the season, then expanded it an inning later with a two-run shot off Mets right-hander Chris Schwinden. Johnson also drove in Jed Lowrie in the fifth inning to finish with a career-high six RBIs, the most by a Houston player since Angel Sanchez also had six Aug. 3, 2010 at St. Louis. Johnson's four hits tied his career high, last achieved Aug. 24, 201 in a win at Philadelphia. Houston relied on the long ball in all three wins, getting home runs from Matt Downs on Monday and Chris Snyder and Lowrie on Tuesday. Lowrie finished 3-for-4 with three runs scored to extend his hitting streak to six games. Brian Bogusevic and Jason Castro each went 2-for-4 with an RBI. Bogusevic also scored two runs. Rodriguez (3-2) limited New York to one run on six hits through seven innings for his third win in as many starts. He struck out five and walked two, and lowered his ERA to 1.64. David Carpenter and Fernando Abad combined to shut out the Mets over the final two innings. Ruben Tejada went 3-for-4 with two doubles for the Mets, who lost their third straight game and went 2-4 on a six-game road trip through Colorado and Houston. David Wright scored the lone Mets' run in the fourth on an Andres Torres groundout. Schwinden lasted four innings, and allowed five runs on six hits -- including the two homers. He struck out one and walked two. His replacement, right-hander Manny Acosta, gave up three runs on six hits over two innings. All three runs allowed came in the fifth inning. NOTES: Astros CF Jordan Schafer left the game after the fourth inning with lower back tightness. He was replaced by Justin Maxwell. ... With a walk in his first at-bat, Shafer reached base safely for a 24th consecutive game, one shy of tying the team record to start a season set by Denis Menke in 1969. ... Mets RF Lucas Duda was scratched from the lineup because of flu-like symptoms. Scott Hairston started in right field, with Kirk Nieuwenhuis at left.