LA Angels Shutout by Cubs in Mesa
After producing eight runs on 17 hits Thursday, the Angels offense went quiet in their 3-0 loss to the Chicago Cubs in front of a Cactus League record crowd (15,446) at Sloan Park in Mesa today.
All six Angel hits were singles. They came from Yunel Escobar, Kole Calhoun, C.J. Cron, Roberto Baldoquin, and two from Craig Gentry.
Andrelton Simmons was robbed of a hit in his second Angels at bat by the official scorer when his scorching line drive to Cubs shortstop Munenori Kawasaki was curiously deemed an error. Sherman Johnson was the only other Angel to reach base when he walked in the fifth inning. Mike Trout hit a scorching line drive straight to Fowler in center in his second at bat. Ji-Man Choi went hitless in two at-bats and was robbed of an extra-base-hit by Cubs’ right-fielder John Andreoli‘s leaping grab on the warning track in the ninth inning (watch highlight).
The Angels biggest threat came in the first inning when Escobar and Calhoun started the inning with back-to-back base hits. Trout then crushed a 405 foot fly ball to straight away center field but Dexter Fowler tracked it down on the warning track. It would have had home run distance at both Angel Stadium and Wrigley Field. Both baserunners tagged and advanced, but Cron struck out and Simmons grounded out to end the threat. The Halos batted a combined 0-6 with runners in scoring position and left five runners on base.
The pitching staff held the Cubs to just five hits. Jered Weaver started his first spring game and pitched two scoreless innings where he gave up two hits and struck out three. Weaver’s fastball was clocked in around 81-83 mph and he mixed it up with some off-speed pitches in the mid-60s. In his post game interview, Mike Scioscia said, “It’s a good starting point for him. As he continues to get his work in, you’ll see some of the things that are important to him. He really hit his spots well and itched with his breaking ball and changeup” (Mike DiGiovanna).
Fernando Salas pitched a clean 1-2-3 inning in the third. Jose Alvarez surrendered two runs in the fourth inning when Addison Russell hit a two-run no-doubter to left field after a Javier Baez single. Ramon Ramirez then pitched two shaky innings in which walked three and allowed one earned run (following a Kyle Kubitza error). Deonis Guerra pitched an efficient 1-2-3 seventh inning and Kyle McGowin struggled in the eighth when he allowed one hit and two walks. McGowin was aided by a very impressive throw by Rafael Ortega from right field that gunned down Kawasaki at third base.
Jose Alvarez (0-1) was credited the loss. Click here to view the complete box score.
Andrew Heaney will start for the Angels against Wade Miley and the Mariners in Peoria on Saturday at 12 p.m. PT.