HOUSTON -AP- Albert Pujols hit a two-run homer in the first inning andRicky Nolasco pitched seven solid innings, helping the Los Angeles Angelshinder the Houston Astros wild-card hopes with a 2-0 victory Thursday night.
The Angels ended an 11-game skid and kept Houston one game behind the Orioles and Tigers for the second AL wild card, with Detroit still playing later Thursday against the Twins.
Astros miss out on chance to gain ground, lose to Angels 2-0
Pujols homered into the Crawford Boxes in left field, helping Los Angeles move to 2-11 against the Astros this season.
Nolasco (7-14) gave up five singles and struck out five. He did not allow a baserunner past second. Nolasco had a second straight scoreless start after throwing six shutout innings Saturday against Toronto.
JC Ramirez pitched the eighth before Andrew Bailey pitched the ninth for his fifth save.
Mike Fiers (11-8) allowed two runs and four hits with a season-high nine strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings. The right-hander sent down 13 straight at one point. Fiers had his second straight strong outing after throwing six scoreless innings Saturday in Seattle.
Jose Altuve had three hits for Houston, which grounded into three double plays.

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