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Astros find offense in 8-1 win over Indians

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KRISTIE RIEKEN | June 23, 2012 07:08 PM EST | AP

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HOUSTON — Rookie Dallas Keuchel pitched a complete game and J.D Martinez and Jordan Schafer hit consecutive homers in Houston's four-run fifth inning, leading the Astros to an 8-1 win over the Cleveland Indians on Saturday.

Keuchel (1-0) allowed six hits and struck out three for his first win in his second major league start.

The Astros had scored just one run in the last three games combined and were hitless through the first four innings on Saturday.

They discovered some offense in the fifth inning and tied it at 1, before Martinez's two-run shot gave them a 3-1 lead. Schafer connected on the next pitch to extend the advantage.

Cleveland starter Jeanmar Gomez (4-7) got off to a great start, but was undone by his fifth inning struggles. He allowed six hits and five runs in 5 2-3 innings.

Jose Altuve added a solo homer in the eighth inning and Chris Johnson finished with two RBIs and a pair of doubles for Houston.

Asdrubal Cabrera led off the fourth inning with his ninth home run to put Cleveland up 1-0.

Keuchel got back on track after that, retiring the next nine batters he faced. The 24-year-old didn't allow another hit until a single by Jason Kipnis to start the seventh inning.

But Jose Lopez grounded into a force out before Keuchel retired the next two batters to end the inning. He pitched a 1-2-3 eighth inning before allowing two hits in a scoreless ninth to wrap up his victory.

The Astros didn't get a hit until Brian Bogusevic and Johnson connected on back-to-back doubles to start the fifth inning and tie it 1-all.

Martinez's one-out homer which bounced high on the wall above the Crawford Boxes in left field scored Johnson and gave Houston a 3-1 lead. Schafer then went deep to the Crawford Boxes for his first homer since April 22.

Altuve singled with two outs in that inning, but was caught stealing to end the inning.

Jed Lowrie walked to start the sixth and scored from first on a double by Carlos Lee to leave Houston up 5-1. Gomez retired Bogusevic and Johnson before he was replaced by Tony Sipp, who struck out Jason Castro to end the inning.

Lowrie doubled after the homer by Altuve in the eighth inning and scored on a double by Lee to make it 7-1. Johnson's second double of the game came with one out to score Lee and leave Houston with a season-high nine extra-base hits. The Astros hadn't had more than six in a game before Saturday.

NOTES: Houston LF Justin Maxwell was scratched from Saturday's lineup with an injured left ankle which has been bothering him for a while. He was replaced J.D. Martinez. ... These teams wrap up the series on Sunday when Cleveland's Derek Lowe opposes left-hander J.A. Happ.