Verlander allows 2 HRs in 2-hitter, loses 2-1 to Tigers

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HOUSTON (AP) – Justin Verlander pitched a two-hitter and lost, allowing homers to John Hicks and Ronny Rodriguez as the Detroit Tigers beat the Houston Astros 2-1 on Wednesday night.

Hicks led off the ninth with a tiebreaking blast to left-center field off Verlander (15-5), who leads the majors in strikeouts with 239 but ranks second in homers allowed with 33.

The veteran right-hander retired the first 14 batters, with six strikeouts, before Rodriguez homered to the seats in right with two outs in the fifth. Verlander sat down another 10 straight before Hicks connected.

Houston had just four hits before Robinson Chirinos belted his 14th homer to left-center on Tyler Alexander’s first pitch of the seventh to tie it at 1.

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Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander throws against the Detroit Tigers during the first inning of a baseball game Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2019, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
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