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Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Time to start taking the Angels seriously
After winning its sixth game in a row against the Red Sox last night (6 out of 7 this season), the Los Angeles Angels are looking pretty legit.
Their preference of small-ball has fallen apart in recent playoff history but they used the long ball to their advantage in last night's 7-5 win at Fenway.
Dice-K (11-2) went five innings, giving up six earned runs on seven hits with two walks and three strikeouts.
The better Weaver-Jered (9-8)-was good enough to win. He lasted 5.2 innings, giving up three runs on six hits with three walks and four strikeouts.
Los Angeles (65-40) took a 1-0 lead in the second on Juan Rivera's sacrifice fly. Boston (61-46) came back with two in the fourth on Manny Ramirez's two-run single.
Everything fell apart for Matsuzaka and the Red Sox in the sixth as Casey Kotchman had a two-run homer, Torii Hunter hit a three-run blast and Jeff Mathis's squeeze made it 7-2 before the Sox could blink.
Jed Lowrie's ground-rule double to right scored David Ortiz (2 hits, 2 runs, walk), making it 7-3 Angels in the sixth. Jacoby Ellsbury came up later in the inning with the bases loaded and two outs but struck out on a pitch in the dirt against Angels rookie reliever Jose Arredondo.
Ellsbury came through in the eighth with an RBI single off Scot Shields, cutting the lead to three (7-4 Angels).
For yucks, Manny hit a bomb (reminiscent of his walk-off in the 2007 ALCS) in the ninth off Francisco Rodriguez. That was the only blemish though for K-Rod, who recorded his league-leading 44th save of the season.