HOUSTON (Ticker) --
did not have to wait long to shake off a disappointing performance.
One day after giving up a go-ahead two-run homer in the ninth inning, Wagner pitched a perfect inning to cap a stellar performance by the
' relief corps in a 4-3 triumph over the
The Astros had lost seven of their previous eight contests, including a midweek sweep at home against Atlanta.
"That's the life of a closer," Wagner said. "You go out there one day (later and) you've got it. Finally, we got a bounce to go our way."
Friday's contest was tied, 3-3, with two outs in the bottom of the sixth when Houston's
hit an easy grounder to
. But the third baseman bobbled the ball and was a fraction of a second late throwing to first.
"Look at the replay," said Marlins starter
, who believed Ausmus was thrown out. "That cost us the game. It was 3-3 right there. If not for that, we might still be playing."
Lowell advanced to second on a wild pitch by Penny (2-2) and took third on an infield single by
before scoring the go-ahead run on a single by pinch hitter
One inning later,
extended his National League-leading hitting streak to 14 games with a leadoff double and
drove him home with a double to right field, staking Penny to a three-run lead. The Astros escaped further damage when third baseman
made a diving stop on a line drive by
with two outs and runners at second and third.
"The game turned when
catches that ball that D-Lee hit with two runners on," Torborg said. "That goes down the third base line, it's 5-0."
"I've had a history of playing against these guys," Blum said. "I know it's going to be a busy day (at third base) no matter who's on the mound."
Houston tied the contest in the fifth on a fielder's choice by Everett and consecutive RBI singles by
"We scratched back in this game," Astros first baseman
said. "That's something we needed to do."
Penny allowed four runs - three earned - and seven hits in six innings before
pitched two frames of hitless relief.
Linebrink gave up three runs and six hits in five innings, striking out three and walking one.
"I was not completely satisfied," Linebrink said. "I felt like I battled out there to give us five innings. (But) in my situation - I'm a spot starter - that's good."
"We played good defense, made some key pitches and the bullpen was great," Williams said. "Linebrink gave us a good game."