Carlos Correa delivered a walk-off single with the bases loaded and no outs in the 12th inning, and the Houston Astros rallied from a three-run deficit to defeat the visiting Kansas City Royals 4-3 on Saturday at Minute Maid Park.
Correa lined a 1-1 fastball from Royals right-hander Justin Grimm (1-3) into right-center field, scoring George Springer from third base. Springer was 0-for-5 before working a leadoff walk and reaching third on a popup single by Alex Bregman that dropped in shallow right.
Right-hander Collin McHugh (3-0) struck out the side in the 12th. Five Houston relievers combined to allow one hit over six scoreless innings while producing seven strikeouts.
The Astros pulled even at 3-all during a ninth-inning rally against Royals right-hander Brandon Maurer, with Yuli Gurriel delivering a one-out single and pinch runner Jake Marisnick darting to third on a Josh Reddick single one at-bat later. Marisnick scored on an Evan Gattis sacrifice fly.
After walking three batters in each of his previous three starts, Royals right-hander Ian Kennedy reclaimed his control. He limited the Astros to two runs on four hits and one walk with five strikeouts over seven innings and faced just one batter with a runner in scoring position.
That hiccup came in the fourth with Astros second baseman Jose Altuve, who doubled with one out and advanced on a wild pitch, on third base and Correa at the plate. Correa scored Altuve with a deep fly ball to right field, and Gurriel followed with his third homer, a line drive into the Crawford Boxes in left.
But Kennedy held a 3-0 lead entering that frame, and the Astros’ two-run uprising merely proved threatening. After inducing a popup from Reddick to close the fourth, Kennedy allowed just two more singles before capping his outing with a strikeout of Marwin Gonzalez.
The Royals landed what was a significant blow with two outs in the top of the fourth. First baseman Hunter Dozier lined an opposite-field home run, his fourth, to right off Astros starter Lance McCullers Jr., driving in Salvador Perez and Alex Gordon, both of whom singled.
McCullers was relatively unblemished otherwise, allowing only one additional hit — a leadoff single by third baseman Mike Moustakas in the sixth. McCullers issued two walks and posted nine strikeouts over six innings, nearly duplicating his line against the Royals in his previous start.
—Field Level Media