Astros Lose Lance McCullers Jr. To Injury But Blow Out Dodgers
Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

The Houston Astros extended their reign over the Los Angeles Dodgers, pulling away for an emphatic 14-0 victory to put them in position to complete a three-game sweep at Dodger Stadium on Sunday.


If there was a downside for Houston on the night, it was Lance McCullers Jr. being removed after four shutout innings. He was checked on by Astros manager AJ Hinch and a trainer before warming up for the fifth inning, and appeared to point at his right elbow while walking off the field.

McCullers allowed just two hits, issued two walks and collected five strikeouts prior to the apparent injury. He exited with a 1-0 lead, which the Astros extended in the sixth inning to take control of the game.

Following Josh Reddick’s one-out ground rule double and a walk by Alex Bregman, Yulieski Gurriel pulled a ball down the third-base line for a two-run double. Marwin Gonzalez, who homered in the second inning, was intentionally walked.

It led to Tyler White hitting an RBI double when Chris Taylor was unable to make a difficult diving catch on. It gave Houston a 4-0 lead and knocked Maeda out of the game. A fifth run was added to his ledger when the Astros pulled off a squeeze against J.T. Chargois.

The wheels then truly came off in the eighth inning as John Axford and Zac Rosscup combined to allow seven runs. Axford’s Dodgers debut began with a single and pair of walks that loaded the bases.

Martin Maldonado hit a two-run ground-rule double, Axford plunked Tony Kemp to again load the bases, allowed a sacrifice fly and two-run double to George Springer. Axford was removed after allowing six runs and retiring only one of seven batters faced.

Fresh off the 10-day disabled list, Zac Rosscup surrendered a three-run home run to Josh Reddick before he managed to end the inning. Jake Marisnick piled on with a booming two-run homer off Rosscup in the ninth.

The Dodgers’ side of things was much quieter at the plate. They had just three baserunners reach scoring position, including Yasmani Grandal in the bottom of the eighth, but couldn’t scratch and mustered just three hits.

The loss dropped the Dodgers to one game back of the Arizona Diamondbacks for first place in the National League West.

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