Gomber lifts Rockies 6-3, Astros’ 9th loss in 10 games

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Colorado Rockies’ Yonathan Daza, front, celebrates as he crosses home plate after hitting a solo home run as Houston Astros catcher Martin Maldonado looks on in the second inning of a baseball game Wednesday, April 21, 2021, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

DENVER (AP) — Austin Gomber got his first victory for the Colorado Rockies, allowing two hits over six innings to beat the Astros 6-3 on a wintry Wednesday afternoon and send Houston to its ninth loss in 10 games.

It was 34 degrees at first pitch and a light snow fell throughout the game, gaining in intensity.

The weather didn’t bother Gomber (1-2), among five players acquired from St. Louis in the Feb. 1 trade that sent star third baseman Nolan Arenado to the Cardinals.

“You try to block it out the best you can. It’s cold, there’s no way around that,” said Gomber, who grew up in Florida. “It’s not something ideally I’d love to do every five days but they had to go through the same conditions on the other side. It was an experience, for sure. It’s the first time I’ve ever pitched in snow like that, but no real issues gripping the ball.”

Gomber allowed Yuli Gurriel’s two-run homer in the second but just one hit and a walk after. The 27-year-old left-hander walked two and struck out six, including the side in order in the fifth, and retired 14 of his last 16 batters.

Houston starter José Urquidy (0-2) gave up four runs and six hits in five innings.

“Urquidy kept us in the ballgame,” manager Dusty Baker said. “In the bullpen, he was spot on. He threw everything where he wanted. I don’t know if the mound’s any different or the conditions or if he was just feeling a little anxious. I’ve never seen Urquidy throw a ball consistently high like that. He’s usually down in the zone, he’s usually around the plate.”

Gurriel drove in all three runs for the Astros. Houston also was 7-10 last year before winning eight in a row.

“We’re 3 1/2 games back, 17 games into a season that’s 162 games long, just get to work, get back into rhythm,” Alex Bregman said.

Yonathan Daza hit his first major league home run in his 58th big league game. Dom Nunez doubled, singled and drove in two runs for Colorado, which swept the two-game interleague series.

“It felt incredible. Just a dream come true,” Daza said through an interpreter. “I just remember one of my favorite players Miguel Cabrera hit one in the snow. I just kind of had that feeling going into the game today,”

Trevor Story hit a two-run double in the first. Gurriel’s homer tied the score and Daza put Colorado ahead for good when he homered leading off the bottom half. Nunez doubled in a run later in the inning, and boosted the margin to 6-2 in the sixth against Brandon Bielak when Nunez hit an RBI double and scored on Raimel Tapia’s sacrifice fly.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Astros: OF Myles Straw was out of the lineup due to the side effects of his COVID-19 vaccination. He played center field and batted leadoff Tuesday night and went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts.

UP NEXT

Astros: Head home for a four-game series against the Los Angeles Angels starting Thursday. RHP Cristian Javier (1-0, 2.08 ERA) gets the start in the first game. Houston optioned reliever Peter Solomon to the alternate training site to add Javier to the active roster.

Rockies: RHP German Márquez (1-1, 3.57 ERA) takes the mound to open a three-game series against Philadelphia on Friday night.

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