ANAHEIM (AP) — Andrelton Simmons hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning that completed a five-run comeback by the Los Angeles Angels in their 7-6 victory over the Houston Astros on Saturday night.
Kole Calhoun singled home Mike Trout with two outs in the eighth to make it 6-4. Simmons then slipped and finished his swing on one knee but still drove Tyler Clippard’s slider over the left-field fence, sending fans at Angel Stadium into a frenzy amid fireworks over center field.
Los Angeles snapped a three-game skid. The Angels and Seattle Mariners are a half-game behind Minnesota in a packed race for the second AL wild card.
Trout worked a two-out walk and went to third on a single by Albert Pujols against Francis Martes. Clippard (2-8) gave up Calhoun’s single before Simmons connected on the next pitch.
Blake Wood (2-4) worked a hitless inning and Blake Parker got three outs for his second save.
Before the eighth, the Astros appeared to be cruising.
Jake Marisnick and George Springer homered to back Brad Peacock’s six strong innings as the AL West leaders raced out to a 6-1 lead.
Marisnick’s home run, a golf shot in the fourth that made the score 5-1, came off starter Tyler Skaggs. Springer’s drive came in the seventh off reliever Bud Norris and made it 6-1. Meanwhile, Peacock struck out eight.
Calhoun hit a solo homer in the second. Los Angeles scraped across two runs in the seventh to make it 6-3.
Skaggs got himself into trouble in the second when he allowed a single to Brian McCann and a double to Marisnick.
McCann scored on Skaggs’ balk and then Marisnick scored on an error by third baseman Luis Valbuena. By the end of the inning, Houston led 4-0.
Josh Reddick hit a two-run single in the first for the Astros.
Astros: Manager A.J. Hinch said Carlos Correa (thumb) was expected to play shortstop for Triple-A Fresno. The plan is for Correa to be the DH on Sunday for Fresno. The star slugger has been out since July 17. … RHP Will Harris (shoulder) returned to the team but was not activated. Harris allowed two runs and two hits in one inning Friday for Fresno. … RHP Lance McCullers (back discomfort) will need another rehab outing, according to Hinch. McCullers allowed three runs in three innings Friday for Fresno.
Angels: Manager Mike Scioscia said RHP Garrett Richards is expected to throw Wednesday for Triple-A Salt Lake. Richards has pitched in only one major league game all season because of a biceps strain. … Scioscia said the team was looking at “early next week” to determine a rehab assignment for 3B Yunel Escobar (oblique).
Astros: RHP Charlie Morton (10-6, 3.81 ERA) will look to rebound from his last start, a 10-6 loss to Washington. He is 2-0 with a 3.24 ERA in his career against the Angels.
Angels: RHP Ricky Nolasco (6-12, 5.05) is scheduled to start Sunday. He is 7-2 with a 3.63 ERA against the Astros, including 1-1 with a 2.77 ERA in two starts this season.
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