Dallas Keuchel tossed seven innings of one-run ball and Chris Carter provided three hits, powering the Astros to a 4-2 victory over the Royals in Game 3 of the ALDS on Sunday evening. The Astros now hold a 2-1 series lead.
The Astros fell behind 1-0 when Keuchel served up a solo home run to Lorenzo Cain in the fourth inning. Carter, however, kickstarted a one-out rally in the fifth against Royals starter Edinson Volquez when he hit a one-out double to left field after Luis Valbuena had drawn a walk. Jason Castro brought both of them home with a ground ball single up the middle, putting the Astros up 2-1.
A two-out RBI single by Carlos Gomez in the sixth pushed the score to 3-1, and Carter provided additional insurance when he slugged a towering solo home run to left field off of Danny Duffy in the seventh. Carter finished 3-for-3, marking the only time this season he’s had three hits in a game.
The Royals had a few opportunities to score, but Keuchel managed to pitch out of trouble repeatedly. He finished having allowed the one run on five hits and three walks with seven strikeouts. Volquez was on the hook for three runs on five hits and four walks with eight strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings.
Reliever Tony Sipp walked a batter before leaving with two outs in the eighth inning. Closer Luke Gregerson was able to notch the final out of the eighth with a ground ball. In the ninth, Alex Gordon led off with a solo home run to left-center, but Gregerson was able to see his way out of the ninth inning without any further damage for the save.
The Astros will attempt to clinch the ALDS at home on Monday at 1:00 PM EDT. Yordano Ventura will start for the Royals against Astros rookie right-hander Lance McCullers.
MILWAUKEE — The Brewers had two players and a staff member test positive for the coronavirus at their alternate training site in Appleton, Wisconsin.
Milwaukee president of baseball operations David Stearns confirmed the positive results Saturday and said they shouldn’t impact the major league team. Teams are using alternate training sites this season to keep reserve players sharp because the minor league season was canceled due to the pandemic.
Stearns said the positive tests came Monday and did not name the two players or the staff member. Players must give their permission for their names to be revealed after positive tests.
The entire camp was placed in quarantine.
“We have gone through contact tracing,” Stearns said. “We do not believe it will have any impact at all on our major league team. We’ve been fortunate to get through this season relatively unscathed in this area. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get all the way there at our alternate site.”
Milwaukee entered Saturday one game behind the Reds and Cardinals for second place in the NL Central, with the top two teams qualifying for the postseason.
The Brewers still will be able to take taxi squad players with them on the team’s trip to Cincinnati and St. Louis in the final week of the season. He said those players have had repeated negative tests and the team is “confident” there would be no possible spread of the virus.
“Because of the nature of who these individuals were, it’s really not going to affect the quarantine group at all,” Stearns said. “We’re very fortunate that the group of players who could potentially be on a postseason roster for us aren’t interacting all that much with the individuals that tested positive.”