Houck, the first-round draft pick of the Red Sox in 2017, struck out seven and walked three on 86 pitches. The 24-year-old righty became Boston's 15th starting pitcher this season.
"For me, getting to go out there and get to warm up the first time definitely had the heart pounding a little bit more than usual," Houck said. "It was a surreal moment."
"I lost the command a little bit," Houck said. "But being able to come back, throwing a slider and punching him out was a big moment and definitely set me up to go back out there for the fifth."
Houck will have additional opportunities before the season ends to vie for a spot in the rotation next year.
"That's why we have him pitching now to see what he's like and if he would fit in next year," Boston manager Ron Roenicke said. "It's good to get him out there, and if we can get him a couple of more [starts], that would be great. We'll see what happens, but what a great start for him. If you want to make an impression, he made an impression on all of us."
With the obvious emotions of appearing in his first major league game, Houck also used the occasion to promote an important cause he values deeply. Houck donated $700 to his Pitch for Adoption Campaign after he pledged $100 for each of his seven strikeouts against Miami. Houck's mother adopted younger sister Reanna when she was 4.
"Having my sister come into my life was a big thing for my whole family," Houck said. "To be able to help her change her life was so inspiring for me. I want to continue to do that for other kids because they are our future. I was lucky to have parents that gave me everything I wanted and helping me get to this and live out my dream. I want to continue to help kids fulfill their dreams."
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.