Astros Go Deep 5 Time to Rally for 9-8 Win over Angels Despite Shohei Ohtani’s MLB-best 34th Homer

AP Photo/Eric Thayer
Los Angeles Angels designated hitter Shohei Ohtani hits a home run during the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Houston Astros in Anaheim, Calif., Sunday, July 16, 2023.

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Alex Bregman connected for a two-run homer with two outs in the ninth inning for his fourth hit of the game, Chas McCormick went deep twice and the Houston Astros rallied from a four-run deficit to defeat the Los Angeles Angels 9-8 Sunday night despite Shohei Ohtani’s major league-leading 34th homer of the season.

Kyle Tucker also had four hits, including a solo shot in the ninth inning. The Astros trailed 7-5 going into the ninth before scoring four off Jaime Barria (2-5).

Tucker also made a diving catch on Matt Thaiss’ line drive to right field for the final out as the Angels stranded runners on first and second. Ohtani’s blast to center off Phil Maton earlier in the inning got them within one run.

Jake Meyers also went deep as Houston had five homers, all in the final three innings.

Rafael Montero (2-3) got the win and Maton picked up his first save.

Los Angeles’ Trey Cabbage had three hits and two RBIs in his first major league start. Mike Moustakas had a solo shot in the second inning, and Taylor Ward had a bases-clearing double in the seventh inning to extend the Angels’ lead to 7-3.

It proved not to be enough though as the Halos dropped their seven straight series at home to their AL West rivals. It also erased any momentum they had after a 13-12 win in 10 innings Saturday night.

Pinch-hitter Bligh Madris led off the Houston ninth with a walk and advanced to second on Grae Kessinger’s base hit. Both advanced on Corey Julks grounder to third.

Madris scored on Mauricio Dubon’s grounder to bring make it a one-run game before Bregman connected on a first-pitch slider from Barria and drove it into the Astros’ bullpen for a two-run shot. Tucker followed with a solo shot on a full count.

McCormick got his second career two-homer game in the eighth inning with a two-run shot to right that cut the Astros deficit to 7-5.

Cabbage, who was called up from Triple-A Salt Lake on Friday, got his first big league hit on Sunday when he lined a single to left. He then got his first RBIs in the fourth with a two-run double down the left-field line to give the Angels a 3-1 lead.

Cabbage had a base hit in the seventh before he was lifted for pinch-runner Andrew Velazquez. After Luis Rengifo lined out to center, Velazquez was running on a 2-1 pitch from Kuhnel and scored on Neto’s double to center.