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Astros Rally In The Eighth, Win 6-4

Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Humberto Quintero singled in the go-ahead run in Houston's three-run eighth inning, as the Astros came back to beat the Pittsburgh Pirates, 6-4, to snap a five-game slide.

The Pirates, who started the day atop the NL Central, came back from a 3-0 deficit before blowing the lead in the eighth.

Jose Veras (2-3) absorbed the loss after yielding three runs -- two earned -- while recording just one out.

Jeff Keppinger belted a two-run homer, while Michael Bourn added three hits and drove in a run for the Astros.

Neil Walker went 4-for-5 with a home run and two RBI, while Lyle Overbay and Brandon Wood also went deep for the Pirates, who had won three of four coming in.

Pittsburgh was in first place this late in the season for the first time since 1997, but fell a game behind the Cardinals in the division as a result of St. Louis beating the Reds on Saturday.

The Pirates tied things on back-to-back home runs by Overbay and Wood in the sixth.

Bud Norris, who also surrender Walker's solo blast in the fifth, was pulled later in the inning with two on and two out, and Walker greeted Wilton Lopez with an RBI single for a 4-3 lead.

The Astros rallied to re-rake the lead in the eighth.

With Hunter Pence on third and one out, Brett Wallace hit a grounder to short. Chase d'Arnaud opted to go home with the ball, and Pence slid in safely on a close play at the plate.

Wood's error on Clint Barmes' sharply hit ball to third put runners on the corners, and Quintero laced a single to left to plate the eventual game- winning run.

Bourn added an RBI single off Chris Leroux, and Mark Melancon hurled a perfect ninth to lock down his seventh save of the season.

Carlos Lee scored on a passed ball in the second, and Keppinger took Paul Maholm over the left-field wall in the third for a 3-0 edge.

Maholm, who entered with a 1.04 ERA in six starts against division rivals this year, surrendered three runs on nine hits over five innings...Norris was touched for four runs on nine hits in his outing...Pittsburgh still leads the season series, 8-3...The Pirates stranded 10 runners.

Images by eflon used in background images under a Creative Commons license. Thank you.