for this game

Astros rally in ninth to clip Dodgers

May 24, 2011 - 5:44 AM Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Hunter Pence' dramatic, RBI single highlighted a three-run ninth, as the Houston Astros edged the Los Angeles Dodgers, 4-3, in the first of a three-game set from Minute Maid Park.

Trailing 3-1 and down to their final at bat, the Astros placed runners on second and third with two outs before Michael Bourn ripped a game-tying double down the right field line. After Clint Barmes was hit by a pitch, Pence lifted a 1-0 cutter over short and Bourn barely beat the throw home to complete the exhilarating comeback.

"Hunter came through," Astros manager Brad Mills said. "He's going to give you a big at-bat every time up."

Jeff Fulchino (1-2) earned the win after working 1 2/3 innings of scoreless relief to help the Astros win for the third time in their past four games.

Kenley Jansen (1-1) suffered the blown save and the loss, as the Dodgers dropped their third straight.

Matt Kemp blasted the 100th home run of his career and James Loney went 1- for-4, extending his hit streak to nine games.

Kemp's milestone homer gave Los Angeles a 1-0 lead in the top of the second.

Houston responded in the third, as Humberto Quintero brought home Bill Hall with a single to right-center to tie the game. Hall notched a season-high four hits in the win.

For Los Angeles, the meltdown wasted a strong effort from Clayton Kershaw, who allowed just one run on four hits, while striking out seven over six innings. He received the no-decision, but remains perfect in the month of May with a 3-0 record.

"This was a tough one to lose. When things aren't going right for your team it's a tumbling effect," Kershaw said.

Houston's starter Bud Norris also performed well, holding the Dodgers to three runs -- two earned -- on six hits over seven innings. He resided over a 1-1 tie in the seventh when pinch-hitter Andre Ethier ripped a two-out, RBI single up the middle. Dioner Navarro crossed the plate and the charging Michael Bourn overran the ball as it rolled into center, allowing Russell Mitchell to score as well.

Hall initiated the rally in the ninth with a one-out single to left. After Matt Downs went down swinging, Angel Sanchez worked a two-out walk, placing runners at first and second. With Bourn at the plate, Hall and Downs stole third and second, respectively. Bourn worked the count full before ripping the game-tying double down the line.

Game Notes

Pence now has 24 hits with runners in scoring position on the year -- the most by any Astro since 1974 at this point in the season...Hall's last four-hit game came against Oakland, on June 6, 2010.