HOUSTON — Lance McCullers Jr. received multiple hugs after exiting in the seventh inning Friday night at Minute Maid Park.
McCullers struck out a career-high 12 in the Astros’ 11-4 win against the White Sox. Working on three extra days of rest since his previous start on June 28, the Astros’ right-hander carried a no-hitter into sixth inning and was welcomed with embraces from manager AJ Hinch and pitching coach Brent Strom when his career evening was complete.
The 24-year-old McCullers went to his curveball for 58 of his 93 pitches and buckled the White Sox with 23 swinging strikes. He lost his no-no in the sixth, allowing three consecutive singles, including an RBI knock to Yolmer Sanchez.
The offense did what was needed to boost McCullers. Yuli Gurriel roped an RBI single in the third inning and reserve catcher Tim Federowicz knocked his first RBI as an Astro with a two-run double in the fourth.
The Astros clobbered the White Sox’s bullpen with seven insurance runs in the eighth inning against reliever Hector Santiago, including a three-run homer from Evan Gattis, who became the first Astro to reach 60 RBIs this season.
Christian Boutwell is a reporter for MLB.com based in Houston.