Well, that was fun. We’ll get to the bulk of the game in a minute, first let’s wrap our heads around this for a second. 20 Strikeouts. 2-0. That is a club record for strikeouts in a game, and the first time in Major League history that a team has combined for that number of strikeouts. Wow. Just wow.
Zack Greinke, although not especially economical tonight, was spectacular. He only lasted five innings, but 12 of those 15 outs were by way of strikeout (one was a passed ball giving him 13 total). He walked two and allowed seven hits but, that number 13 is pretty attractive is it not.
The offense got started early tonight with Mike Trout reaching in the first on an error and then coming around to score on an Albert Pujols single. Two batters later, Alberto Callaspo would lift a sacrifice fly into right field bringing home Torii Hunter to give the Angels a 2-0 lead. It went quiet on the western front after that as Greinke and Erasmo Ramirez settled into what was turning into a pitchers duel. In the fourth, Justin Smoak hit his first home run of the night, cutting the Angels lead in half. An inning and half later, The Angels answered right back when Torii Hunter broke out the boom stick for his 16th home run of the season plating both himself and Mike Trout. The Blast gave Hunter 86 RBI’s on the season, and the Mike Trout run tied Vladimir Guerrero‘s team record.
The following inning, Erick Aybar got in on the homer parade when he hit home run over the short wall down the right field line putting the Angels up 5-1. The Mariners would net three more runs in the top of the 7th on a Franklin Gutierrez double and Smoak’s two-run home run. But that was all they would get as the relief corp shut them down the rest of the way finishing with Ernesto Frieri notching his 21st save, and subsequently ending his mini streak of ruining Zack Greinke starts.
With the exception of Scott Downs, each Angel pitcher did their job on their way to achieving a place in the annals of baseball history. And it was a good thing too since Oakland won an extra inning affair deep in the heart of Texas. The Angels remain two spots out of the Wild Card, but show no signs of slowing down. Their remaining schedule compared to Oakland is an easier one, so if they just keep on winning, there’s no reason we shouldn’t be playing late into October.