Bud Norris has done a good job so far as the No. 1 starter for the Houston Astros. Norris pitched three-hit ball over seven innings, Rick Ankiel drove in three runs and Justin Maxwell hit his first home run of the season, leading the Astros to a 5-0 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on Friday in their first meeting as AL West rivals. "I've had those kind of starts before in my career and I know I've got more left in me," Norris said. "It's not like anything changes. You try to do it every time and it's not necessarily going to go down that way." Norris (2-1) struck out five and walked two in his 100th big league start, helping the Astros win their third in a row after six straight losses. Rookie manager Bo Porter used three relievers in the ninth to clinch the combined four-hitter. "This guy's a No. 1 starter and he's pitched a lot of big games," Porter said. "I think his best years are definitely ahead of him. He's growing up right in front of our eyes, and it's a pleasure to see." Singles by Brendan Harris, Mark Trumbo and Hank Conger were their only hits against Norris. The Angels, coming off a three-game sweep by Oakland, have lost five straight and are off to a 2-8 start - matching the worst in franchise history. The inaugural 1961 club also lost eight of its first 10. Making matters worse was the way Friday's game ended, with Josh Hamilton forgetting the number of outs and getting doubled up at first base on Mark Trumbo's foul pop to Jason Castro. "That's obviously a bad play. That's a mental mistake," manager Mike Scioscia said. "As perfect as players try to play, and as hard as they try to play, unfortunately mental mistakes are occasionally going to creep into the scenario. "We've seen it from other teams, and unfortunately it got us tonight. And Josh knows it. He's accountable. He knows he messed up. So we're going to move on. It's a mental mistake. It happens. It's obviously ugly when it happens, and we're going to move on. That's it." Tommy Hanson (1-1) threw 108 pitches through five innings, giving up five runs, eight hits and two walks. The Angels, who have a $148.5 million payroll, have had their rotation struggle on this homestand.
Angels shut out, match worst start in franchise history
CBS Sports | Apr 13