HOUSTON (Ticker) -- The
are starting to get things in order.
earned his first win of the year, allowing one run and three hits in eight innings, to lead the Astros to their season-high fourth straight victory, 8-1 over the
Miller (1-3) retired the first 16 batters before
delivered a clean single up the middle.
"Miller pitched a great game," Houston manager
said. "He gave us eight good innings and really pitched well tonight. He had a perfect game going for him there for awhile. He got ahead of hitters with a lot of first-pitch strikes, he hit his spots and really used his defense out there. He was in the strike zone with all of those pitches. And when he does that, he is hard to beat."
"I just wanted to go out there tonight, get into a groove and work on correcting what I was doing wrong," said Miller, who lowered his ERA from 6.07 to 5.02. "You just want to get the outs, make good pitches and give the guys a chance to win."
(3-4) did not fare nearly as well.
gave the Astros the lead with one out in the bottom of the first with a solo homer, his second of the season.
Blum drove in another run in the third inning when his sacrifice fly plated Miller.
followed with a long two-run homer to left field to make it 4-0.
"It is fantastic for us to have this kind of lineup," Blum said. "It feels good to go out there and put up the runs like we did and I was glad that I could get things started for us."
Houston continued to produce in the third as
hit back-to-back singles.
missed a three-run homer by inches, settling for a two-run double off the left field wall.
Hidalgo's two-base hit chased Benson after he surrendered six runs and eight hits in 2 1/3 innings, the shortest outing of his career. He gave way to
, who escaped further trouble.
"The past two outings, my location has just been pretty erratic," Benson said. "I paid for it tonight. That is basically the gist of the whole ballgame right there."
Hidalgo has five hits and four RBI in the last two games.
Benson fell to 2-6 with a 4.83 ERA in 11 career appearances against the Astros.
In five games against Benson at Minute Maid Park, Houston is hitting .380. It's the worst performance by any pitcher in the four-year history of the stadium.
"He just didn't hit his spots and his breaking ball was up," Pirates manager
said. "He tried to come inside a few more times, but he left it over the plate. He tried to go away, but he left it in. Just not his night, but he has thrown extremely well for us this year."
Pittsburgh did not get on the board until the seventh, when
hit an estimated 461-foot solo homer, the longest in the history of Minute Maid Park.
Miller also allowed the previous longest homer, a 458-foot blast by
on September 13, 2000.