Detroit, MI (SportsNetwork.com) - Lance McCullers picked up his first major league win and the Houston Astros pulled off their first triple play since 2004 in a 3-2 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Saturday.
McCullers (1-0), whose father pitched for the Tigers in 1990, was sharp in his second career start. The 21-year-old limited Detroit to two runs while striking out six over six innings.
"This is a nice win for us," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. "Nice day for McCullers, who really pitched well from start to finish."
The Astros can salvage a split of the four-game series on Sunday.
Kyle Lobstein (3-5) suffered his third straight defeat after allowing all three runs on seven hits over 5 2/3 innings.
"He had trouble throwing strikes, felt like he was behind quite a bit," said Tigers manager Brad Ausmus. "He still found a way to keep us in the game and give us a chance."
Both teams broke through for a run in the third inning. Marwin Gonzalez doubled to lead off the top of the frame and advanced to second on Jake Marisnick's groundout. He scored on Jose Altuve's sacrifice fly.
Detroit answered on Anthony Gose's RBI double to the wall in center.
James McCann, who had key hits for Detroit in both previous games in this series, doubled to right to lead off the fifth. Jose Iglesias followed with an infield single and Gose plated another run by grounding into a fielder's choice.
Iglesias suffered a left knee contusion on the play and was replaced on the basepaths by Hernan Perez. With two on and no outs, Detroit was set for a big inning before Ian Kinsler grounded into a 5-4-3 triple play.
The defensive highlight ignited Houston's offense a half inning later. Preston Tucker and Chris Carter hit consecutive singles with two outs and Jason Castro followed with an RBI single to tie the game and chase Lobstein.
Al Alburquerque took the mound and Gonzalez greeted him with an RBI single to right-center, giving the Astros a 3-2 lead.
Will Harris replaced McCullers and pitched a clean seventh inning. Joe Thatcher and Pat Neshek took care of the eighth and Luke Gregerson struck out two during a clean ninth to record his 11th save.
It was Houston's first triple play since Aug. 19, 2004, in Philadelphia ... Detroit still holds a major league-best record of 16-5 in day games ... Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera extended his hitting streak to 11 games.