The Angels are beginning to create some distance in the American League West.
Behind a strong start from Jered Weaver and home runs from Chris Iannetta and Albert Pujols, the Angels defeated the Athletics 4-0 last night at Angel Stadium in Anaheim.
Weaver allowed just three hits and three walks over seven scoreless innings in the victory. He’s now tied with Max Scherzer and Rick Porcello for the American League lead with 15 wins. As for the offense, Iannetta lifted a two-run homer off Jon Lester in the fifth inning which fell out of a leaping Coco Crisp’s glove and over the center field fence. Pujols added a solo shot for some insurance in the seventh.
The Angels now have a season-high three-game lead over the A’s, who have lost 12 out of their last 18 games. Still trying to find their footing after Garrett Richards’ knee injury, the Angels will send Cory Rasmus to the hill tonight in what is likely to be a bullpen game. Oakland will counter with Jeff Samardzija.
Your Friday box scores:
Athletics 0, Angels 4
Twins 1, Orioles 9
Reds 1, Pirates 2
Yankees 6, Blue Jays 3
Phillies 1, Mets 4
Marlins 2, Braves 5
Red Sox 8, Rays 4
Tigers 7, White Sox 1
Cubs 7, Cardinals 2
Indians 6, Royals 1
Rockies 2, Diamondbacks 5
Rangers 13, Astros 6
Brewers 2, Giants 13
Nationals 8, Mariners 3
Dodgers 2, Padres 3 (12 innings)
The big news, of course, is Ichiro’s retirement. But there was a baseball game that counted today as well and the Mariners took it. Seattle beat Oakland 5-4 in 12 innings to sweep the two-game Japan Series.
Ichiro may have taken an 0-for-4 in his last game, but Ryon Healy and Mitch Haniger homered for the Mariners, staking Seattle to a 3-0 lead after three. The A’s picked up two in the fifth and Seattle added one via a Jay Bruce sac fly to make it 4-2 in the seventh. Oakland tied things back up, ultimately sending it to extras when Khris Davis singled in Matt Chapman in the seventh. Davis would blow a chance to put Oakland ahead in the 11th when he struck out with the bases loaded.
In the twelfth, Domingo Santana, who hit a grand slam in Seattle’s win in the opener on Wednesday, beat out a would-be double-play with the bases loaded to drive in the go-ahead and, ultimately, winning run.
The rebuilding Mariners are now 2-0 on the young year. The A’s, who won 97 games last year, are 0-2. Viva the smallest of sample sizes.