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Associated Press

Posted on April 23, 2014 at 3:33 PM

ASTROS-MARINERS

McHugh strikes out 12 as Astros beat Seattle 5-2

SEATTLE (AP) — Collin McHugh struck out a career-high 12 in his season debut, and Jason Castro, Chris Carter and Matt Dominguez homered to lift the Houston Astros to a 5-2 win over the Seattle Mariners on Tuesday night.

McHugh (1-0), called up from Triple-A Oklahoma City for the start, struck out the first three batters of the game to set the tone for his first win in 10 career starts. The right-hander didn't walk a batter, giving up three hits in 6 2-3 shutout innings.

Josh Fields pitched the ninth for his second save. The Astros have won six straight against the Mariners.

Justin Smoak provided Seattle's only offense with a two-run homer in the seventh inning as the Mariners extended their losing streak to eight games.

DIAMONDBACKS-CUBS

Hammel, Olt lead Cubs past D-backs

CHICAGO (AP) — Jason Hammel pitched seven strong innings, Mike Olt hit a three-run homer and Nate Schierholtz drove in a pair of early runs to lead the Chicago Cubs to a 9-2 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night.

Hammel (3-1) allowed just one run and four hits in seven innings to lower his ERA to 2.60.

Olt still is batting below .200 for the season (.195), but has four homers and nine runs batted in.

The Cubs, who've won three of four, have won back-to-back games for the first time this season. They last won consecutive games on Sept. 9 and 10 of last season against the Cincinnati Reds. Their last consecutive home wins came on Sept. 4 and 6 against Miami and Milwaukee.

Brandon McCarthy (0-4) managed to lower his ERA from 7.11 to 6.23. He allowed five runs — one earned — and seven hits in five innings.

GIANTS-ROCKIES

Morales leads Rockies to 2-1 win over Giants

DENVER (AP) — Nolan Arenado hit a go-ahead homer leading off the fifth and Franklin Morales outdueled Madison Bumgarner, lifting the Colorado Rockies to a 2-1 win over the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday night.

Troy Tulowitzki also added a solo shot for the Rockies, who have hit seven homers in two nights against the Giants.

Morales (2-1) was masterful on the mound as he allowed five hits over seven innings, which matches the longest outing of his career. The left-hander's only mistake was a hanging slider to Hunter Pence in the fifth. It was Pence's second homer of the season.

LaTroy Hawkins got the final two outs in a rocky ninth for his sixth save in as many chances.

TRAIL BLAZERS-ROCKETS

Houston's Harden trying to be better in Game 2

HOUSTON (AP) — James Harden missed 20 shots, including two in the final seconds of Houston's Game 1 loss to Portland in overtime.

Now the key word for the Houston star entering Game 2 on Wednesday night is better; he must play better, and the Rockets must be better when it comes to their ball movement.

He says: "I wasn't really driving and attacking and being aggressive like I needed to be. I think when I get into the attack mode everything else opens up."

The Trail Blazers know they aren't going to keep Harden from shooting. He's averaging 16.5 attempts a game this season. But their plan is to make every shot he takes as difficult as possible.

ROCKETS-JONES

Charge against Rockets F Terrence Jones dropped

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Houston Rockets forward Terrence Jones has agreed to pay $10,000 to a charitable organization that benefits the homeless in exchange for having a misdemeanor harassment charge dismissed.

The 6-foot-9 Jones was arrested outside a Portland, Ore., nightclub last summer after a police sergeant saw him walk by a doorway where two homeless men were sleeping and yell "Wake Up!" before stomping on one man's leg.

The civil compromise first reported by The Oregonian newspaper was completed Monday.

Jones graduated from Portland's Jefferson High School before attending the University of Kentucky.

The Rockets selected Jones in the 2012 draft, and he averaged 12 points this season.

He returns to his hometown Friday when the Rockets play the Trail Blazers in Game 3 of their playoff series.

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