Wade Miley tossed six effective innings on Friday and the Arizona Diamondbacks edged the Houston Astros, 3-1, in the opener of a three-game set at Minute Maid Park.
Miley (13-8) gave up just one run on eight hits with no walks and five strikeouts to snap a personal two-game slide. Brad Ziegler and David Hernandez held down the fort in the seventh and eighth innings and J.J. Putz earned his 24th save of the season with a scoreless ninth inning.
"I felt pretty good, just wasn't locating the fastball early," Miley said. "But I was able to go the offspeed stuff and start throwing my slider for strikes, which helped a lot. I just needed to battle through."
Chris Young and Paul Goldschmidt smacked an RBI doubles, and Miley was credited with an RBI on a sacrifice bunt for the Diamondbacks, who have won three of their last five games.
Dallas Keuchel (1-5) was tagged with the loss after allowing two runs on four hits with three strikeouts and a pair of walks over 6 2/3 innings. Tyler Greene knocked in the only run of the night for the Astros, who have dropped four of their last five.
Arizona finally broke a scoreless deadlock in the fifth inning with a pair of runs. Gerardo Parra ripped a solid one-out single to left and went first-to- third on a base hit back up the middle by Wil Nieves before scoring easily on a bunt by Miley. Young followed with a double down the line in left to score Nieves.
"It's frustrating because we kind of conceded that first run with the safety- squeeze," Keuchel said. "It's frustrating to allow that second run to score when we eventually do get the one run."
Houston got a run back in the home portion of the inning to cut the deficit in half. Marwin Gonzalez opened the frame with a double, moved to third on a single by Jose Altuve and scored on a sacrifice fly by Greene.
The Astros threatened in the sixth when Brandon Barnes ripped a two-out single and Jason Castro reached on a dropped third strike, but Miley recovered and fanned Gonzalez to keep the lead intact.
Arizona picked up an insurance run in the eighth on consecutive doubles by Aaron Hill and Goldschmidt to widen the lead to two.
Houston came back with a threat in the home eighth as Justin Maxwell coaxed a leadoff walk from Hernandez and Ben Francisco followed with a base hit. But Hernandez got Barnes to foul out and Castro to fly out before whiffing pinch-hitter Brian Bogusevic to end the inning.
Putz allowed a two-out single to pinch-hitter Scott Moore in the ninth, but came to strike out Steve Pearce to end the game.
The Astros fell to 12-19 against left-handed starters this season ... Arizona has won seven consecutive games against the Astros and four straight this season ... It was Altuve's 44th multi-hit game this season ... The Diamondbacks have won five straight and eight of their last nine games at Minute Maid Park ... Houston finished 2-for-11 with runners in scoring position and stranded 11 men on base.