Jered Weaver got things started off early and hinted at the day to come with 2 strikeouts in the first inning. Taking this momentum into the bottom of the inning, Howie Kendrick took another walk, his 6th of the year, and later scored on a Torii Hunter line drive to left making the game 1-0.
An Alberto Callapso single and a dropped fly by Rajai Davis put two on with Peter Bourjos coming up in the bottom of the 4th. Peter was previously 1 for 20 in the series up to that point, but Fleet Pete hit a triple in the right-center gap making the game 3-0.
Weaver continued his domination of the Blue Jays batters (even picking off Jose Bautista at 1st in the 4th inning), and he took a no-hitter into the top of the 5th.
Weaver's first struggles came in the 6th inning. After giving up 3 straight hits and 1 run, Weaver looked like he might get out of the jam alright, forcing a strikeout and a weak pop fly to left. Apparently, Vernon Wells is not paid enough to remember how many outs are in an inning, and he stood there and let both runners advance to second and third on that same weak popup to left. Weaver did not let that deter him, and instead forced a weak pop to an area of the field that Vernon could not cover--1st base. It's funny because Wells never gets on base (he's batting .100 on the year), so he really can't get to first.
Jered Weaver left the game in the bottom of the eighth. Hisanori Takahshi came in and got the last out. And Fernando Rodney surprised us all with a 1-2-3 dramaless bottom of the ninth.
The flow of this game is a similar one to Angels fans: strong starting pitching, struggles against an unheralded opposing pitcher, and few runs to split among the two teams.
However, this is not the same team as last year. The bullpen had another strong outing tonight. They gave up 0 ER in 9.1 innings pitched last night. This afternoon was less taxing, but Takahashi and Rodney allowed zero runners. A strong bullpen will pick up the Angels' meager offense and also keep the Angels competitive in close games.
Jered Weaver is the real story of this game. 7.2 IP, 4 H,1 ER, 15 K.
|2011 - Jered Weaver||3-0||0.87||0.87||27||9|
Putting up numbers at this rate will put him in the conversation for the Cy Young at the end of the year.
Some run support + strong starting pitching + strong bullpen = Recipe for Angels' success 2011.