Scott Kazmir tossed seven solid innings in his Houston debut as the Astros downed the Kansas City Royals, 4-0, in the opener of a three-game series.
Kazmir (6-5), who the team acquired from Oakland on Thursday, allowed three hits and a walk with three strikeouts for the Astros, who have won five straight.
Preston Tucker hit a solo home run while Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa and Colby Rasmus each drove in a run in the win.
Jeremy Guthrie (7-6) gave up four runs on 11 hits over seven innings for the Royals, who have dropped their last two.
“He kept us off-balance pretty much the whole game,” said Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer about Kazmir. “He wasn’t missing with anything and kept the ball down.”
The Astros took a 2-0 lead in the third inning as Tucker hit a shot over the wall in right, and Rasmus added an RBI single later in the frame.
RBI singles from Altuve and Correa in the fourth gave the Astros a 4-0 advantage.
The Royals left runners at the corners in the fourth and didn’t threaten again until the ninth as the team had men at the corners with one out.
Luke Gregerson, though, entered the game and got Kendrys Morales to hit into a 5-4-3 double play to end the game and pick up his 21st save of the season.