ARLINGTON -- The first six-out save of Ken Giles' career couldn't have come at a better time for the Astros.
Giles pitched out of a messy jam in the eighth inning and worked around a one-out single in the ninth to preserve the Astros' nail-biting 2-1 win over the Rangers on Sunday at Globe Life Park, snapping a season-long five-game losing streak.
"I knew I had to be ready early just in case," said Giles, who recorded his 23rd save. "In these kinds of games, you never know. The skid we were having, I have to be ready for everything."
Astros manager A.J. Hinch went to Giles with no outs in the eighth after Chris Devenski had walked Nomar Mazara and Adrian Beltre to start the inning. With the Astros clinging to a one-run lead, Hinch summoned his closer early.
"There was a lot of adrenaline," Giles said. "Luckily, I was able to control it really well today, just take deep breaths in between pitches and just focus on the main goal, and that was to get Devo out of the jam and then going for the win after that."
Carlos Gomez bunted the runners into scoring position, and Joey Gallo hit a line drive right to first baseman Yuli Gurriel, who caught it and then threw to second base to double off pinch-runner Drew Robinson to end the inning. An excited Giles yelled, "Let's go!" as he came off the mound.
"Giles is tough to bunt against and Gomez did a good job getting the bunt down, and obviously we got a little lucky there with the line drive right at somebody," Hinch said.
Giles struck out Mike Napoli looking on a slider to start the ninth, but then put the potential tying run on base when Rougned Odor singled. Giles closed out the game by getting Shin-Soo Choo to pop out and Delino DeShields to strike out to end Houston's skid.
"We wanted it really bad," Giles said. "We were busting our butts out there every day trying to get back to the way we were before. You know what? Everybody goes through a slump. Teams are adjusting to us, and now we need to adjust to the [other] teams."
Brian McTaggart has covered the Astros since 2004, and for MLB.com since 2009. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.