ANAHEIM -- Carlos Correa's pinch-hit, three-run blast cemented him as a hero Sunday afternoon as the Astros knocked off the Angels, 8-6, in 13 innings.
The win clinched a series victory for Houston, and the club's fifth win in its last six games.
Correa, batting in place of left fielder Tony Kemp, took a 69-mph changeup from Angels reliever Mike Morin and deposited it a Statcast-projected 391 feet away from home plate into the Astros' bullpen in left field, breaking a 5-5 stalemate that lasted since the top of the eighth inning.
"Mike Morin made one bad pitch, a hanging off-speed pitch to [Carlos] Correa and that was it," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.
Both sides had the bases loaded with less than two outs during extras, but it wasn't until Correa's blast that the winning runs were finally pushed across.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Taking the fifth: Jake Marisnick, batting just .145 coming into Sunday, gave the Astros a 2-1 lead with a two-run home run to left-center in the fifth inning. It was the first Marisnick homer since Sept. 7, going 100 at-bats between home runs. Jose Altuve added a two-out, RBI single in the same inning to make it 3-1.
"It was an off-speed pitch, and he [Angels starter Nick Tropeano] left it up," said Marisnick, who also singled and hit the ball hard for outs twice. "Things are definitely better for me lately. A month ago, I would've missed those pitches."
Just to be safe: The Angels rallied to take the lead in the seventh, leading off the frame with a C.J. Cron double off of Ken Giles. Cron scored the tying run on an Albert Pujols flare single to center, and Mike Trout scored the go-ahead run after Johnny Giavotella dropped down a perfectly executed safety squeeze to make it 5-4. Giavotella would come up short in chances to win or tie the game in the ninth, 11th and 13th innings, however, as the Angels left 14 men on base. More >
"Any time the game is on the line, I want to be up there," Giavotella said. "It's a situation that I prepare for, work hard for and tonight they made quality pitches against me and I didn't come through."
Gut check: Angels closer Joe Smith came into the game in the 10th with the score tied at 5-5. He got a quick groundout, but followed it up with a walk, an error by Kole Calhoun and an intentional walk to load the bases. He proceeded to strike out Tyler White and force out Marwin Gonzalez to get out of the inning unscathed.
Mr. Consistency: Astros starter Doug Fister reeled off another quality start, going six innings and leaving with a 4-3 lead. He struck out six. It was Fister's team-leading seventh quality start in his past eight outings; he missed eight in a row by one-third of an inning in his previous start vs. the Orioles.
"In the end, you look up, and Doug Fister has always got us in the game," Hinch said.
UNDER FURTHER REVIEW
Angels pinch-runner Shane Robinson came in to run for catcher Jett Bandy in a tie game in the 10th inning. With two out and Cron at the plate, Robinson attempted to steal second base. He was originally ruled safe. After an Astros challenge, it was ruled that Robinson was tagged before he touched the bag. The call was overturned to end the inning.
Pujols laced a two-out base hit down the third-base line in the 13th inning, attempting to stretch if for a double as Altuve applied the tag. Pujols was originally ruled safe. The Astros challenged the play, but the call stood for a double.
Altuve was picked off at first base by Nick Tropeano in the first inning. It was the third game in a row the Angels have picked an Astros baserunner off first. Morin got Altuve in the seventh inning Saturday, and Matt Shoemaker picked Correa off in the first inning Friday.
"We lead the league in stolen bases for a reason," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. "We're going to stay aggressive. We need to be smarter sometimes, but we're not going to change our approach."
Tropeano now has four pickoffs this season, more than the White Sox, Mets, Cardinals, Rangers, Orioles, Red Sox and Nationals have combined.
"I'm just mixing up looks, mixing up holds," Tropeano said. "I'm changing my throws, quick feet, slow arm, stuff like that."
Giavotella showed his leaping ability to rob Kemp of a hit in the seventh. Giavotella, who is listed at 5-foot-8, leaped to snare the line drive that was coming 96 mph off of Kemp's bat and had a max height of 10.9 feet, according to Statcast™.
Astros: Right-hander Collin McHugh will be on the mound at 3:10 p.m. CT Monday, as the Astros open a two-game series against the D-backs at Chase Field. McHugh was 2-0 with a 1.29 ERA vs. the D-backs last season.
Angels:Jhoulys Chacin takes the ball to open a three-game set against the Detroit Tigers at 6:05 p.m. PT Monday. Chacin has been solid since being acquired on May 11, going at least six innings in two of his first three starts.
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