Well, this is more like it, Angels fans! After three weeks of head-shakingly poor starting pitching, the Angels have managed back-to-back wins with back-to-back quality starts. It’s a small thing, and we all know that we shouldn’t get too excited just yet. On the other hand, it’s only the second time this month that the Angels have put up a “W” on consecutive nights, and it’s definitely a step in the right direction.
Jered Weaver looked more like himself than he has in the past month. Coming off the worst start of his career, he pitched seven strong innings, giving up just two runs on seven hits, with five strikeouts and only one walk. More importantly, Weave looked like Weave. Confident on the mound, confident in his stuff. He didn’t get rattled with runners on base behind him. He didn’t seem fazed when he gave up back-to-back RBI doubles. That aura was decidedly absent his last few starts, but he was commanding the mound tonight.
After giving up a leadoff single to Scott Podsednik, Weaver retired the next six batters he faced. He ran into a little trouble in the third, giving up a leadoff walk to Mike Aviles and a one-out single to Podsednik before getting two fly ball outs to end the inning. Things got interesting again in the fourth. The Angels went into the inning with a 2-0 lead. Albert Pujols lead off the inning with a double to center and took third on a ground out by Kendrys Morales. Pujols pulled up with an injury on his way to third base. He would leave the game after scoring on a Mark Trumbo single to center field. Howie Kendrick then smashed a double to right field and scored on a Maicer Izturis single to center.
The Red Sox would answer in the bottom of the fourth. Ryan Lavarnway hit a two-out double to center that scored Jarrod Saltalamacchia from first base. Then Mike Aviles doubled to left on a ball that very well could have, and probably should have, been caught by Vernon Wells. Wells, who had entered the game when Pujols was injured and Trumbo took over at first, overran the ball and had it bounce off the scoreboard. Lavarnway scored from second and it was 4-2.
Weaver went on to pitch three more innings of shut out baseball. The Angels tacked on three more runs in the top of the sixth. Kendrick smashed a one-out solo home run to left center field. Izturis and Aybar followed with back-to-back singles, chasing starter Clay Buchholz. Mike Trout hit a two-out single to load the bases, and Torii Hunter followed with a two-run single to right field.
LaTroy Hawkins came on in the eighth and struggled a bit. He gave up a run on a Cody Ross double to right field. Kevin Jespen and Ernesto Frieri combined to get the last four outs of the night as the Angels won 7-3.
Light Up the Halo!!
Baseball Quote of the Day: “I’ve come to the conclusion that the two most important things in life are good friends and a good bullpen.” ~Bob Lemon