Ohtani, Drury lead Angels to 6-4 victory over Astros
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Shohei Ohtani had a pair of RBI doubles, Brandon Drury drove in the go-ahead run with a triple in the eighth inning, and the Los Angeles Angels rallied for a 6-4 victory over the Houston Astros on Monday night.
Taylor Ward had three hits and Hunter Renfroe homered for the Angels, who bounced back after being outscored 26-9 in losses to Texas on Saturday and Sunday.
“It’s awesome. The fight that we have to show that relentlessness throughout the lineup it’s pretty cool. It feels like we’re never out of it,” Ward said.
It is also the third time in the past six games the Angels have come back to win when they either trailed or were tied after seven innings.
David Hensley homered for the Astros, who have dropped five of six.
Ohtani tied it at 4-all in the fifth inning with a line-drive double off the wall in right-center to drive in Taylor Ward. The Japanese two-way star, who takes the mound for his eighth start of the season on Tuesday, also had a run-scoring double in the second.
Ohtani is 8 for 24 with four RBIs in May and his batting average improved to .301 after the 2-for-4 night.
“The double that tied the game was huge. I thought he took some really good swings. Maybe it was the day off (last Tuesday), but he looks calmer in the box,” manager Phil Nevin said of Ohtani.
Anthony Rendon drew a walk off Rafael Montero (0-2) to lead off the eighth for the Angels. Two batters later, Drury tripled to center. Drury scored on a sacrifice fly by Matt Thaiss.
Drury said hitting coach Marcus Thames told him to be aggressive going into that at-bat, and he delivered on the first pitch with his seventh career triple.
“I kind of got off that a little bit earlier in the game and I was getting down in the count. So Marcus was telling me to be aggressive. It’s what works for you and it is what makes you good. So I was just being aggressive there and I got a good pitch to hit,” Drury said.
Drury had the Angels’ first go-ahead triple in the eighth inning or later since C.J. Cron on Sept. 5, 2017, at Oakland.
Matt Moore (2-1) pitched 1 2/3 scoreless innings and Carlos Estévez retired the Astros in order in the ninth for his eighth save.
Renfroe hit his team-leading ninth homer in the second inning on a 92.5 mph slider from Hunter Brown. He homered in consecutive games for the second time this season and extended his hitting streak to seven games.
Houston grabbed a 3-1 lead in the third, all with two outs. Mauricio Dubón’s base hit started the rally and he scored on Alex Bregman’s triple into the right-field corner. Yordan Alvarez and Jose Abreu followed with RBI doubles to right.
The Angels tied it in the bottom half on Ohtani’s double and Rendon’s line drive up the middle to score Ohtani. Dubón made a diving attempt to snare Rendon’s liner at the edge of the infield, but it deflected off his glove and went into center field.
Hensley, who came into the game batting .129, put the Astros up 4-3 when he led off the fifth with a solo shot to left-center off Angels starter Patrick Sandoval. It was the third baseman’s first homer of the season and only his second hit in his last 36 at-bats.
“It hurts when you lose them late,” Houston manager Dusty Baker said. “We need to pick up our game. Tonight we had a good offensive night but it seems like we can’t match the two things together.”
Renfroe had the error in the second inning. In the fifth, he threw out Alvarez at second base when Alvarez tried to stretch a base hit into a double.
Astros: OF Chas McCormick was activated off the injured list after missing the past 20 games due to lower back tightness. IF Rylan Bannon was optioned to Triple-A Sugar Land to make room for McCormick.
Angels: LHP José Suarez (left shoulder strain) was placed on the 15-day IL. RHP César Valdez was called up from Triple-A Salt Lake.
Astros: Framber Valdez (2-4, 2.60 ERA) is tied for the major league lead with six quality starts in his first seven outings.
Angels: Ohtani (4-0, 2.54 ERA) matched a career high with 13 strikeouts last Wednesday at St. Louis. He leads the majors in opponent average (.125) and is second in strikeouts (59).
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