The Angels opened a three-game set with New York Yankees today, which could only mean one thing: lots and lots of Yankee fans at the Big A tonight. But the Angels did a good job of silencing them tonight, even though C.J. Wilson looked like he was ready to give it all up in the fourth inning.
In the bottom of the first inning, the Angels drew blood first when Howie Kendrick continued his hot hitting ways with an RBI double to right-center field, driving home Josh Hamilton. That lead held up until the that dreaded fourth inning.
C.J. was money through the first three innings tonight, and set down the first two hitters that he faced in the fourth inning. Then Vernon Wells singled for the first Yankee hit of the night, then five more Yankees came to the plate. But somehow, someway, C.J. managed to limit the damage to only two runs (both runs on a David Adams RBI single) in the inning. But 33 pitches later, the Yankees had a 2-1 lead.
The offense wasn’t going quietly into the night however. Chris Iannetta drove in Mark Trumbo with a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the fourth inning to tie the game up at two apiece. In the sixth inning, Iannetta was at it again, driving home Trumbo with an RBI single, giving the Angels a 3-2 lead. In the seventh inning, this happened. Go on, I’ll wait…
…That, um, basehit for Peter Bourjos proved hurtful to the Yankees when Peter came around to score on Trumbo’s RBI single four batter’s later. It’s OK, I’m still laughing as well.
Wilson was done after seven innings, which was a victory in and of itself considering the implosion job he did in the fourth. Kevin Jepsen was brought in to bridge the gap to Frieri. But instead of making it nice and easy on the Angels faithful, he decided that giving up a single and then a walk to Jayson Nix and Mark Teixeira, respectively, was better for ratings. Jepsen? Don’t do that. We don’t the stomach pain. He set down the next three in order, and a Mike Trout RBI single in the eighth made it 5-2.
Mike Scioscia then predictably went back to the bullpen for the ninth, bringing in Ernesto Frieri to shut the door on the New York Evil Empire’rs (Trademark). And shut the door he did. Frieri set the Yanks down in order, striking out two of the three batters that he faced for his 15th save of the year.
Trumbo and Albert Pujols both collected three hits on the night, and Kendrick’s two hits pushed his team leading batting average up to .328 on the season. And C.J. Wilson finished the night going in seven innings giving up two runs, striking out four and walking three.
The series continues tomorrow with Tommy Hanson getting the start against the Yankees David Phelps. The win tonight gets the Angels back out of the “double digit games under .500” category, with season record moving to 29-38 on the season. Light that baby up, that’s two in a row. One more, and that’s called a winning streak. It has happened before.