Pudge Drives Winning Run For Astros

By: AP Email
By: AP Email

HOUSTON (AP) - Ivan Rodriguez drove in the go-ahead run after a wild pitch on an intentional walk put a runner on third, and the Houston Astros beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 6-5 on Wednesday night.

Hunter Pence doubled in the eighth inning before Los Angeles ran into some trouble trying to intentionally walk Geoff Blum. Ronald Belisario's throw to Russell Martin bounced off the edge of the catcher's glove, and Pence advanced a base as Martin rolled in the dirt trying to chase it down.

Blum walked before Rodriguez singled to center, scoring Pence.

Lance Berkman tied it earlier in the inning with a solo home run off Belisario (0-1) that ricocheted off the wall in left field.

Pence had a two-run homer in the fourth inning to help the Astros win their second straight over the Dodgers, who came into the series with an eight-game winning streak.

Chris Sampson (1-0) gave up a run in two innings for the win.

Astros reliever LaTroy Hawkins pitched a perfect ninth for the save in place of closer Jose Valverde, who is out with a leg injury.

James Loney put Los Angeles ahead in the eighth with a run-scoring double that made it 5-4. Andre Ethier singled to start the eighth before Loney's hit, which rolled into the corner in left field.

Houston tied it 4-all in the sixth on a double by Jason Michaels that scored Berkman and Carlos Lee.

Manny Ramirez led off the sixth with a solo homer off Roy Oswalt that flew over the wall in left and made it 2-1. Ethier followed that home run with a tying shot that bounced off the railing in the left field Crawford Boxes, giving the Dodgers back-to-back home runs for the first time this season.

Casey Blake's two out, two-run homer that bounced off the wall in left and dribbled down the train tracks atop that wall later in the inning put Los Angeles ahead 4-2.

It was the first time Oswalt has allowed three home runs in an inning and the most home runs given up by a Houston pitcher since Jason Hirsh allowed three in 2006.

Oswalt got out of the inning by striking out Randy Wolf and was replaced by Sampson for the seventh.

Oswalt, who doesn't have a win this season in four starts, allowed eight hits and four runs with six strikeouts.

Pence had a two-run homer to center field in the fourth inning that put Houston ahead 2-0.

Dodgers starter Randy Wolf, a former Astros starter, allowed eight hits and four runs with six strikeouts in seven innings.


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