July 27, 2014; Anaheim, CA, USA; Los Angeles Angels third baseman David Freese (6) celebrates with third base coach Gary DiSarcina (9) his solo home run scored in the eighth inning against the Detroit Tigers at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
63-41, 2nd in AL West (1-2 vs. Orioles, 3-1 vs. Tigers last week)
A rocky series with Baltimore was forgotten once Detroit came to town.
Jered Weaver’s hard fought victory last Wednesday denied the Orioles of a three-game sweep and landed the Angels’ ace his 11th win of the season. Trailing 2-1 entering the eighth inning, Erick Aybar tied the game with an RBI double and Kole Calhoun forced a bases-loaded walk.
Recently acquired Huston Street earned his first victory as a Halo, pitching a scoreless ninth.
Friday and Saturday night belonged to Efren Navarro. The backup first baseman/outfielder went 3-for-6 against Tigers pitching during the two-game stretch, each time delivering game-winning hits.
Matt Shoemaker tossed a gem Saturday night, scattering three hits through seven innings while shutting out the team he rooted for as a child. Shoemaker was the first Michigan-born player to defeat the Tigers in nine years.
David Freese capped a wild week with the clutch hit Angels fans have been waiting for. A 1-1 game entering the eighth yesterday, Freese took Joba Chamberlain’s third pitch into the center field rocks. Ironically, the Angels Stadium fireworks weren’t launched until Freese rounded third base.
Street completed his third saves in four appearances as a Halo and marked the team’s 33nd comeback win of the season. Seven of those victories have come when trailing after the seventh inning or later.
Player of the week:
When “El Toro Mambo” blares over Angel Stadium loudspeakers, fans know Navarro up to bat.
The little-known utility player has made a name for himself over the last week, first delivering a pinch-hit, game-winning single against Seattle on July 19 followed by a 8-for-23 week with three RBIs, two walks, and his first-ever home run.
On June 26, Navarro’s sixth-inning RBI single scored Kole Calhoun and proved to be the game winner in a 2-1 victory over Detroit. It was only the fourth hit off Tiger’s starter Drew Smyly, who had a perfect game through 4 1/3 innings.
Then next night, Navarro took Justin Verlander deep for his first career homer. He followed it with an RBI groundout in the sixth, giving Shoemaker and Angels relievers more than enough to work with.
C.J. Wilson is with Double-A Arkansas rehabbing a sprained right ankle suffered against Toronto July 9. He was put on the 15-day DL a day after allowing six runs and eight hits in 3 2/3 innings the night before.
Barring any setbacks, Wilson is only expected to make one start before joining the big league ballclub.
Collin Cowgill is well ahead of the projected 4-5 week window needed to recover from a broken nose and right thumb. Stitches were removed last Monday and he expects to be back within the next two weeks.
Cowgill was batting .277 with a .354 on-base percentage before a Matt West pitch placed him on the DL June 13.
Days after delivering a game-winning hit over Seattle, Grant Green was sidelined with a lower back strain. According to MLB.com’s Alden Gonzalez, X-rays came back negative, meaning Green should be ready for action early next week.
An eight-game road trip takes the Angels through Baltimore, Tampa Bay, and Los Angeles; each team fielding a legitimate playoff contender. Weaver gets the nod in tomorrow’s series opener at Camden Yards.