June 16, 2015

Carlos Correa and George Springer have the Houston Astros rolling through an interleague series with the Colorado Rockies, whose road woes have followed them back to Coors Field.

They'll need a similar effort Thursday as they'll likely have to close out the series without Jose Altuve.

Correa and Springer had three hits apiece and Brett Oberholtzer worked 6 1-3 solid innings to lift Houston (39-28) to an 8-4 win over the Rockies on Wednesday. Chris Carter, Preston Tucker and Jake Marisnick had home runs as the Astros won their fourth in a row and fifth in six games.

Over their last three with Colorado (28-37), Correa is 8 for 14 with a home run, and Springer has gone 7 for 14 with two homers and five runs.

Correa, who has only played in nine games, already owns the Astros' franchise record for most hits through 10 career games with 14. The previous best was 13 hits by Ken Caminiti and Altuve.

"We have a pretty good team," Correa told MLB's official website. "We have guys that can hit one in the ninth hole, and that's one of the reasons we're playing really good baseball right now. We just want to try to keep that up, playing great baseball."

Altuve exited Wednesday's game with right hamstring tightness - a lingering issue that had caused him to miss three of the previous four games. Fighting through the injury, last year's batting champion had been stuck in a 2-for-17 slump.

''We've got to be so cautious with him, especially at high altitude,'' manager A.J. Hinch said. ''I want to err on the side of caution. We can't afford to mess around with Jose.''

Collin McHugh (6-3, 5.08 ERA) will be tasked with following Oberholtzer's solid outing as he faces his former team. The right-hander struggled mightily on Saturday, matching a career high with eight runs allowed in three innings of an 8-1 loss to Seattle. He's surrendered four homers in his last two starts after yielding that many in his previous six.

"I got to figure something out," McHugh said. "It's frustrating because my stuff's not very sharp right now, but my body feels good, my arm feels good. I feel good in between starts. That's just a matter of kind of getting over the hump, getting back to where we need to go."

McHugh has a 3.77 ERA in seven road starts, compared with 6.82 at home. He pitched seven shutout innings against the Rockies in his only meeting with them in 2012 while with the New York Mets.

Wednesday's defeat was the seventh in eight games for Colorado, which returned home following a 1-5 trip to Miami and Houston.

Rockies' starting pitchers have posted a 10.29 ERA and allowed six home runs over 14 innings in three games against the Astros.

It's a trend that Carlos Gonzalez hopes ends soon.

"Sometimes we need to have a guy that gets on the mound and can stop their offense, so we can go out there and put some runs on the board and have the lead," said Gonzalez, who homered Wednesday and is 15 for 35 (.428) with eight RBIs during a nine-game home hitting streak.

David Hale (2-1, 4.56) gets the start for the Rockies. He pitched at least six innings for the fourth time in as many starts Saturday, allowing four runs and three walks in a 4-1 loss to the Marlins.

The right-hander is 0-1 with an 11.37 ERA in six relief appearances against the AL.

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