The best teams manage to grind out wins in the most unusual circumstances, and the Houston Astros are one of those squads. In the 13th inning of a game against the division rival Seattle Mariners, outfielder Michael Brantley hit a laser beam off of Mariners reliever Matt Wisler that found the outfield bleachers at Minute Maid Park, giving the Astros an 11-9 win and propelling AL West-best Houston to a 91-50 record.
The 32-year-old Brantley, who made his third consecutive All-Star team and fourth overall, has been everything the Astros envisioned he would be, and then some.
Brantley now has tied his career-high in home runs with 20, and is hitting a more than solid .324 on the season. There is still a chance he beats out Yankees second baseman DJ LeMahieu and White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson for the batting title.
It certainly was not the most "by the book" way to win a baseball game, but it counts all the same for Hinch and the Astros.