The Angels have the symptoms of a Texas Rangers team they are in pursuit of: big bats shadow immature pitching. They pound the gaps, shoot up their home run totals, and hope the pitching keeps the opposition within reason. Although it is not ideal and definitely not the foundation Dipoto intended, it is working for the time being as the kinks are being ironed with the starting rotation. But if you can't beat the Rangers, may as well mimic them.
Baltimore jumped all over Garrett Richards in the early innings of Thursday night's game that only saw him last 4.1 innings, and give up a season high 7 earned runs. Much like the issues with Santana, it seems that Richards is challenging too much with the fastball and finds himself doing so behind in the count. When you fall behind, you have to catch the plate. And when you catch the plate too much, potent lineups like Baltimore's will capitalize on their pitches, not Richard's.
As was the case on Thursday, but fortunate enough for Anaheim, Jake Arrieta ran into the same issues. The Angels are swinging the bats at a higher level as of late (.271 BA), third in all of baseball. They continually tease double-digit runs and have crept within striking distance of being in the top 10 in categories such as runs, RBI's, and HR's. It suffices but one comes to wonder for how long. The offense is fashionable and intimating, as one hot bat falls in line with another. It just goes to imagination that if both the offense and pitching were in sync, how dangerous the combination could be in situations like the postseason.
Despite being halfway through the season, the Angels are getting things done by picking each other up. The greatest sign of a winning ballclub.
- Mike Trout went 2-for-2 with 2 singles, 2 sac flies, and a walk to raise his average to .348 and stay atop the AL at that mark.
- The Angels moved to 5-1 in the season series against Baltimore, a team they could possibly be in contention with late in the season as wildcards.
- Matt Wieters supplied Baltimore with 4 of the 7 runs batted in, moving himself to 4th among all catchers in RBI's
Kendrys continues to stay hot, going 3-for-4 with a pair of singles and 3 RBI's. He drove in a couple runs with a single in the 4th that would prove to be the game winner and capped a 5-run rally for his club.