Houston, TX (SportsNetwork.com) – Mike Trout cracked a pair of home runs, the
last a three-run shot that broke a tie game in the eighth inning and propelled
the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim to a 6-3 win over the Houston Astros.
Trout delivered a two-run shot, the reigning American League MVP’s 100th homer
of his career, earlier as part of a five-RBI night. Kole Calhoun added a pair
of hits and scored three times in his return to the lineup to help the Angels
take the opener of this three-game series.
Jered Weaver turned in his best start of the season for Anaheim, though he
wound up with a no-decision despite permitting just two runs on six hits
through six innings. Cesar Ramos (1-0) received the win after escaping a
jam in the bottom of the seventh that preceded Trout’s go-ahead blast off Chad
“He’s one of the better players in the game right now,” Qualls said of Trout.
“Hats off to him. He did his job.”
Astros starter Roberto Hernandez struck out six while allowing three runs on
only three hits over six innings of work.
Jason Castro had a solo homer for Houston and Evan Gattis finished 2-for-4 in
the loss, the Astros’ third in four games.
Weaver, battered for 10 runs in 10 1/3 innings in his two previous starts, was
denied his first victory of 2015 when the Astros pushed home a run against the
Anaheim bullpen in the bottom of the seventh. However, the Angels quickly
threatened with the game knotted at 3-3 in the eighth.
Johnny Giavotella greeted Qualls with a single and Calhoun worked a walk to
bring up Trout, who launched a sinker the other way into the seats in right to
break the deadlock.
“When I get my pitch I’m just trying to swing hard,” Trout said.
Joe Smith and Huston Street then protected the lead with a scoreless inning
apiece, with Street recording a spotless ninth for his fourth save.
Weaver had departed with a 3-2 lead that was erased shortly after pinch-hit
singles by Robbie Grossman and Jonathan Villar and Pestano’s walk to Jose
Altuve loaded the bases with none out in the seventh. George Springer then
plated Grossman with a sacrifice fly, but Ramos entered the game and got Jed
Lowrie to bounce into a crucial double play that kept it tied.
Hernandez had yielded only one hit — a leadoff triple by Calhoun in the
fourth that led to the game’s initial run — through his first five innings.
However, Calhoun singled with one out in the sixth and Trout followed by
crushing a pitch into the left-field seats to stake the Angels to a 3-1 lead.
Castro swiftly brought Houston within one, however, by hammering a full-count
curve from Weaver over the wall in right during the Astros’ half of the
Hernandez had retired the first nine Anaheim hitters — four on strikeouts —
prior to Calhoun drilling a pitch to Tal’s Hill in center field and hustling
all the way to third. A sacrifice fly from Matt Joyce later in the fourth put
the Angels up 1-0.
Weaver was able to hold the Astros off the board until the fifth, when infield
singles by Chris Carter and Jake Marisnick set up Altuve’s run-scoring base
hit up the middle. The Angels starter prevented further damage, however, by
retiring Springer and Lowrie with two in scoring position.
At 23 years and 251 days old, Trout became the youngest player in MLB history
to compile 100 career homers and 100 stolen bases. Alex Rodriguez had owned
the previous record at 23 years and 309 days old … Trout also hit safely in
a 10th straight game, becoming the fourth Angel to begin a season with a
double-digit streak … Calhoun had not started any of the Angels’ past four
games due to tightness in his right calf … Houston’s Will Harris extended
his scoreless innings streak to 21 2/3 with a shutout seventh … The Astros
are 0-6 this season when failing to score the first run.