Justin Verlander throws career-best 14 strikeouts as Astros fall to Yankees

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Justin Verlander throws career-best 14 strikeouts as Astros fall to Yankees (KTRK)

On a day in which the Astros pitching staff was under fire for alleged cheating, Justin Verlander silenced the noise with a monster 14-strikeout night.

RELATED: Cleveland Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer accuses Astros pitching staff of cheating

The right-hander pitched eight scoreless innings with 14 strikeouts against the New York Yankees on Tuesday night, tying a career high in the Ks column that he threw twice before.

The outing, though, was the only bright spot for the Astros who needed to wake up the bats against the Yankees in their 4-0 loss.

The Astros (20-11) had to crack a Yankees pitching staff that kept Houston's bats just as quiet as Verlander did with New York's order. Starter Justin Montgomery pitched only the first inning before leaving with elbow tightness.

The Yankees sent out a crew of flame-throwers in Domingo Herman, Chad Green, Delin Betances, David Robertson, and Aroldis Chapman to challenge Astros hitters. The staff combined for 13 strikeouts and allowed six hits in nine scoreless innings.

The game was scoreless on both sides until the ninth inning when Ken Giles gave up four runs, including a three-run homer by Gary Sanchez.

Verlander's outing, which counted as a no-decision, followed a masterful 10-strikeout series-opening outing for platoon-mate Charlie Morton, who got the win in a 2-1 game Monday night.

READ MORE: Morton's 10 strikeouts lead Astros to win vs. Yankees

Before Tuesday, the last time Verlander faced off with the Yankees, he posted a pair of gems in the American League Championship Series: a Game 2 complete game shutout and a pivotal Game 6 outing in which he struck out eight and allowed no earned runs in an elimination game.

Verlander, much like his starting rotation compatriots, is overachieving in the young season. Entering Tuesday, he was tied atop the AL wins category and second in ERA at 1.36. Morton and Gerrit Cole are numbers three and four in the latter category.

Houston will look to regroup Wednesday night, with Dallas Keuchel facing the Yankees' Luis Severino.
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sportsHouston AstrosNew York YankeesMLBHouston
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