By the way Albert Pujols challenged Yasiel Puig’s arm, one would think MLB’s Los Angeles teams were playing for more than bragging rights. Unfortunately, multiple fielding errors and an unscathed Dodgers’ bullpen were too much for the Angels to overcome in a 5-4 extra inning loss Friday.
Dodgers’ spot starter Zach Lee led off the game by allowing Kole Calhoun and Pujols on base. Josh Hamilton followed with a three-run shot to the right field bleachers, giving the Angels an early 3-0 advantage. Despite missing most of spring training with a calf injury, Hamilton has come on the last 10 games hitting .367 with two home runs and eight RBIs.
Pujols reached again in the third inning with a one-out double to left field. After Hamilton struck out, third baseman David Freese lined a shot to right field that landed in front of Puig. Aware of the right fielder’s cannon of an arm, Angels third base coach Gary DiSarcina still waved Pujols home. He narrowly slid under catcher A.J. Ellis‘ tag and extended the lead to 4-1.
The Dodgers chipped away at the lead from then on, shutting out the Halos offense. Sixth-inning fielding errors by Angels pitcher Garrett Richards and first baseman C.J. Cron made it a one-run game. Richards went 5 1/3 innings conceding three runs on seven hits. It was a reassuring start for projected No. 3 starter who struck out six and allowed only one walk.
The teams headed into extra innings for the second time this spring after the Angels escaped a bottom of the ninth, bases loaded, no-out situation. With runners on second and third, pinch-hitter Darnell Sweeney singled to left-center and gave the Dodgers a 10th inning victory, snapping the Angels nine-game winning streak.
A magnitude 5.1 earthquake rocked Dodgers Stadium in the sixth inning. While the tremor noticeably shook cameras, Angels manager Mike Scioscia says the players didn’t notice. “We didn’t feel a thing. The stadium’s loud sometimes, it’s rocking so you wouldn’t be able to tell anyway,” Scioscia said in a post-game interview with Fox Sports.