Thursday, August 14, 2014
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Jered Weaver pitched into jams and out of trouble in every early inning, waiting for the Los Angeles Angels' slumbering bats to provide some help.
The Angels came through with just enough offense to seal a sweep of Philadelphia.
Howie Kendrick delivered a go-ahead, two-run single in the sixth inning, and Weaver pitched six resilient innings in the Angels' 4-3 victory over the Phillies on Wednesday night.
Weaver (13-7) yielded two runs and eight hits for the Angels, improving to 6-1 in his last 10 starts despite trailing 2-1 in the sixth.
"You keep this team in the game, and the offense is going to come through," said Weaver, who improved to 16-4 in interleague play. "If you can limit those guys, we'll always have a chance."
Brennan Boesch drove in two runs for the Angels, who salvaged a 3-4 homestand by sweeping two games from the last-place Phillies. Los Angeles (70-49) pulled within 2 1/2 games of Oakland atop the overall major league standings.
The Angels' once-powerful offense struggled throughout the homestand, but came alive in the sixth inning of both games against the Phillies. One night after Los Angeles scored seven runs in the sixth, it scored three more against A.J. Burnett (6-13), who had shut down the Angels in the first five.
Albert Pujols started the rally with a one-out double, and Kendrick's bases-loaded bloop landed just inside the right-field line. Boesch, recalled from the minors Tuesday, then added an RBI groundout. He also had a sacrifice fly in the second.
"We didn't kill the ball, and the early runs weren't there, but we broke through and held a lead," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "Right now, we've got to scratch and claw if you're not going to score runs. That's the only way you're going to beat good pitchers like Burnett."
Burnett gave up five hits and four walks over six innings, dropping to 0-5 in his last six starts.
"I don't feel snakebit," Burnett said. "It's in my control. I mean, it definitely hasn't gone the way I wanted it to. I'm very discouraged. I'm not going to lie. I'm not a bit happy, but the season is not over."
Marlon Byrd and Jimmy Rollins had early run-scoring singles for the Phillies, who have lost nine straight games to the Angels since 2003.
Grady Sizemore tripled and scored on Domonic Brown's groundout in the eighth against Joe Smith, but Huston Street pitched a perfect ninth for his seventh save. Street has made 10 scoreless appearances since the Angels acquired the All-Star closer from San Diego last month.
Mike Trout went 0 for 4, capping an ugly 4-for-29 homestand for the Angels' MVP candidate. Trout, who grew up a Phillies fan in southern New Jersey, saw his average drop from .305 to .294 in seven games.
A NEW WEAVER:
The Angels' longtime ace pitched two days after his wife, Kristin, gave birth to their second child, daughter Josie.
Weaver will bring his family home from the hospital on Thursday before catching up with the Angels in Texas on Friday for the series opener.
"My wife let me get my rest," Weaver said.
Angels: Tyler Skaggs had elbow ligament replacement surgery Wednesday. He won't return until 2016. Reliever Mike Morin, who cut his foot, is scheduled to pitch in the minors Thursday, hoping to return to the Angels on Saturday.
Phillies: After a travel day, Cole Hamels (6-6, 2.37 ERA) takes the mound in San Francisco.
Angels: After a day off, Garrett Richards (12-4, 2.54 ERA) opens a weekend series at Texas.