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José Altuve's grand slam quiets booing, sends Houston Astros past Cleveland Indians 7-2

The Tribe has lost five of its last six and sits five games out of first place.

CLEVELAND — José Altuve hit a grand slam to briefly quiet incessant booing by Cleveland fans, Yordan Alvarez and Michael Brantley also homered, and the Houston Astros snapped a four-game losing streak with a 7-2 win over the Indians.

Altuve connected for his fifth career slam in the fifth inning off rookie J.C. Mejia. The Astros (49-33) are making their first visit to Progressive Field since 2019, and they started hearing boos and other comments during pregame introductions by Indians fans still stinging from Houston's infamous sign-stealing scandal.

Houston starter Framber Valdez overcame some early control issues and allowed two runs in seven innings. Mejia was solid through the first four innings before coming unraveled in the fifth, when a bloop double, a walk, and a botched play on a bunt set the stage for Altuve's drive to the home run porch.

The Tribe (42-36) took an early 2-0 lead thanks to a Valdez wild pitch and an RBI double by Harold Ramirez, but went just 1 for 9 with runners in scoring position on the evening. What's more, Eddie Rosario was forced to leave the game in the third inning with what was described as right quad tightness.

The Indians have now lost three in a row and five of their last six, putting them five games behind the Chicago White Sox for first place in the AL Central. They'll try to get back in the win column Friday night, when lefty Sam Hentges (1-2, 7.32 ERA) starts against Houston's Lance McCullers (5-1, 2.94).