Pujols' bat helps Halos knock out win in 13th

Two-run single caps five-run frame; Trout also notches four-RBI game

Pujols' bat helps Halos knock out win in 13th

ATLANTA -- Angels first baseman Albert Pujols entered Saturday night mired in a slump during which his batting average had plummeted from .302 to .249.

Pujols got back on track with four RBIs, including a two-run single to cap a five-run 13th inning that lifted the Angels to an 11-6 win over the Braves at Turner Field.

Following Friday's 4-3 loss to the Braves, Pujols was asked if he would be open to moving out of his customary third spot in the lineup.

"I don't think I need to talk about that because the whole reason [manager Mike Scioscia] hasn't moved me is because he trusts me and he believes in me," Pujols said. "I don't think somebody wrote 1,500 RBIs and put a sticker on the wall. I think I earned those in my career."

Pujols' four RBIs on Saturday night moved him past Joe DiMaggio on the all-time list. Mike Trout also drove in four runs, including a two-run double in the 13th.

Pujols and Trout connected for back-to-back homers in the sixth for a 3-0 lead, which seemed to be enough after Garrett Richards struck out a career-high 10 batters in six scoreless innings as the Halos carried a 5-1 lead into the ninth.

Ernesto Frieri blew the Angels' four-run lead by giving up hits to all five batters he faced in the ninth. Cory Rasmus worked a 1-2-3 13th to end the nearly five-hour thriller.

"It was fun," said bench coach Dino Ebel, who served as acting skipper with Scioscia attending the funeral of former teammate Bob Welch.

After Kole Calhoun plated the go-ahead run on a bloop single in the 13th, Trout ripped a two-run double and Pujols followed with an RBI single.

Pujols also supplied the first run of extra innings, leading off the top of the 10th with a double. He came home on Josh Hamilton's RBI single to give the Angels a 6-5 lead they would lose in the bottom half.

"We never quit," Trout said. "We put some good at-bats together late, and we won the game."

The Halos seemed on the verge of breaking once Frieri exited in the ninth and Mike Morin entered to face Justin Upton with the potential winning run on second base and no outs.

But the reliever slammed the door by fanning Upton and inducing a double-play grounder by Chris Johnson to send the game to extras.

"When Morin came in and got that ground-ball double play, that was huge," Trout said. "We could have easily folded right there and lost the game, but he made a good pitch and picked the guys up."

One inning later, it was Calhoun's turn to save the day. After diving and missing at B.J. Upton's two-run triple in the ninth, the right fielder robbed Justin Upton's bid for a walk-off RBI single with a spectacular diving play for the third out.

"Everybody was ready to jump out," Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons said. "That won the game for them. That was a big moment for them. They fought back after that and ended up taking it."

The late-game collapse cost Richards what would have been his third straight win. Richards has given up only one earned run in his past 21 innings, lowering his ERA to a rotation-best 2.87. He scattered four hits and three walks in his third straight quality start.

"Our guys in that dugout, the tempo was there," Ebel said. "They felt it. I felt it. This game was ours. They were going to make it theirs and they did."

Joe Morgan is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.