(SportsNetwork.com) - Undefeated right-hander Colin McHugh will try to pitch the Houston Astros to their longest winning streak since 2006 on Saturday night in the third contest of a four-game set with the Seattle Mariners.
McHugh comes in with a 3-0 mark and 2.92 earned run average through four starts. He won his third straight outing on April 21 versus Seattle, giving up three runs over seven innings to win his eighth start in a row dating back to last season.
The hurler gave up another three runs on Monday in San Diego for a no- decision, logging six innings and working around seven hits without a walk in his club's 9-4 win.
The 27-year-old is 4-2 in six all-time starts versus the Mariners with a 4.06 ERA.
McHugh will try to pitch Houston to its first nine-game winning streak since Sept. 20-28, 2006. The Astros kept their current run intact with last night's power-filled 4-3 victory.
Evan Gattis hit a two-run homer in the first inning to set the tone, while George Springer and Jake Marisnick added solo homers to give the Astros a victory in eight straight for the first time since Aug. 27-Sept. 3, 2008.
Jose Altuve went 2-for-3 and recorded his ninth straight multi-hit game. That ties a club record held by Jesus Alou (1969) and Billy Hatcher (1987).
Nelson Cruz and Logan Morrison hit solo homers in the ninth and Robinson Cano added an RBI double for the Mariners, who have dropped their past two. Roenis Elias gave up three runs on six hits while walking three and striking out eight in six innings.
"(Elias) did a nice job," said Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon.
Cruz's homer was his major league-leading 11th of the season and hit the decorative train tracks at Houston's Minute Maid Park.
While Cruz's power continues to impress the Mariners, they also have to be happy with right-hander Taijuan Walker's recent turnaround. The young hurler goes for a second straight win tonight.
Walker allowed 14 runs over just 7 1/3 innings in losing his first two outings, but held Houston to one run in a no-decision on April 21 before picking up a 3-1 victory in Texas on Monday. The 22-year-old was charged with one unearned run on six hits and fanned five over seven innings
"Taijuan just stepped up big and really gave us a good start when we needed it," Mariners shortstop Brad Miller said.
Walker's ERA is now 6.86 through four starts, but he is a perfect 3-0 with a 2.67 ERA in five career starts versus the Astros. He struck out eight over 5 1/3 innings in the earlier no-decision, won 6-3 by Houston.
Houston won three of four against the Mariners earlier this month.