LOS ANGELES (AP) — Freddie Freeman of the Los Angeles Dodgers joined some exclusive company, collecting his 2,000th hit and becoming the 98th player in major league history with that milestone and 300 home runs.
The only thing missing on Sunday was a victory.
Alex Bregman drove in the game-winning run in the 11th inning and the Houston Astros beat Los Angeles 6-5 to take a bit of luster off Freeman’s accomplishment.
“I seem to get these milestones in losses,” Freeman said, noting that manager Dave Roberts pointed out his 300th homer also came in a loss to St. Louis on May 18. “But, no, just seeing how happy my dad, my stepmom, my wife, my kids were for me, it just makes it special.”
Bregman’s leadoff single to left field scored Mauricio Dubón from second. Ryan Pressly (2-2) got credit for the win, and Houston avoided a three-game sweep.
Jeremy Peña and José Abreu hit two-run homers, Hunter Brown threw six strong innings, and the Astros won for just the seconds time in nine road games.
Freeman had two doubles to reach the hits milestone and Mookie Betts led off the bottom of the first with a home run, but the Dodgers couldn’t rally for the second straight game. Yency Almonte (3-1) took the loss.
Los Angeles tied it up with three runs in the eighth off reliever Rafael Montero, starting their push when Freeman drove in Betts by becoming the 295th player in major league history to record 2,000 hits.
“Hits mean a lot to me,” Freeman said. “Everyone views success differently in their careers and how they go about it, but hits and average, that is what I care about. If I have a lot of hits and I have a good average, that means I’m getting on base a lot for me and the team, and we’re able to score a lot of runs. … Hits, yeah, I like hits, and hopefully we get a lot more.”
Will Smith then blasted a two-run shot to deep center to tie the game at 4.
“We were just fighting all day, and just much better baseball has been played by us the last week,” Freeman said. “Kind of everyone’s clicked, pitching staff and as an offense, so hopefully we can continue that trend in Denver and on the road trip.”
Houston’s Corey Julks led off the 10th with a double to right that scored Peña. In the bottom half of the inning, a sacrifice fly by Betts scored Miguel Rojas and tied the game at 5.
Smith looked as if he might tie it up again in the 11th, but Dubón made a diving grab behind second base to deny him a hit. Seth Martinez got David Peralta to ground out to end the game, picking up his first save.
Peña and Abreu spotted the Astros their 4-1 lead in nearly identical fashion, each launching a hanging splitter by Tony Gonsolin into center field. Peña’s shot carried 418 feet in the second inning, and Abreu’s went 412 feet in the fourth.
Houston is 38-9 when scoring at least four runs.
Astros: IF Jose Altuve did not play Sunday after hurting his heel running out a bunt single on Saturday. … LF Yordan Alvarez (oblique strain) hit in the batting cage for the second straight day. “He said he felt pretty good,” manager Dusty Baker said. ”He ran, he threw. These are things that bother you when you got a bad oblique.”
Dodgers: OF Chris Taylor was placed on the injured list Sunday, retroactive to Thursday, with a bone bruise in his right knee. … 3B Max Muncy is set to return from an injured left hamstring on Tuesday to begin a three-game series at Colorado. He has not played since June 11.
Astros: LHP Framber Valdez (7-5) will start on Tuesday in the opener of a three-game series at St. Louis. Valdez has gone at least seven innings in nine of his 15 outings.
Dodgers: LHP Clayton Kershaw (9-4) gets the nod on Tuesday to start a three-game series at Colorado. Kershaw is 3-0 with a 1.33 earned run average in four starts this month.