There were two really lousy losses on this date in Angels postseason history...
1986 - The Angels lose 8-1 to the Red Sox in Fenway Park and are eliminated 4 games to 3 as Boston takes the American League Pennant.
Starting Pitcher John Candelaria loaded the bases in the bottom of the second inning and three runs crossed the plate. If that buzzkill didn't make the inevitable apparent, if the tragedy of Game 5 and the sad certainty of Game 6 hadn't made you accept the early death of this team and the Candy Man's lousy inning didn't, well the four-run fourth inning dissolved the hope of the most die-hard Halo faithful. The disaster of the 1982 collapse was but a lighthearted memory.
Of John Candelaria's 7 Runs allowed, NONE were earned. It was a team failure. They were finished when they walked off the field after Game 5, the final two in Boston were just a technicality. Gary Pettis, Jack Howell and Jerry Narron struck out against Calvin Schiraldi in the ninth and it would be just under sixteen years until David Eckstein, then aged 11, stepped into the batter's box in Yankee Stadium in the 2002 ALDS as a member of the Angels.
1986 may have made 2002 a lot sweeter for those of us who lived thru it, but many Angels fan would not live to see 2002 and the permanence of the team folding may have taken more than a few to an early departure.
Those who wanted to believe in magic had their own logic. Bartolo Colon had been in injured pitching in the deciding game of the ALDS. Rookie Ervin Santana came out of the pen and kept the game close, ate some innings and allowed the Angels to mount a great comeback. Therefore the sense of destiny surrounding this pitcher would be fulfilled as this young kid was suddenly hoisted into the roll of playoff starting pitcher.
Sounds great for a screenplay but as far as the White Sox were concerned it was another day, another three-run first inning homerun for Paul Konerko.
Santana made it into the fifth inning of a 5-2 ballgame. It was basically already the ballgame and the series, really.
Read the Halos Heaven archived GAME THREAD... if you are a masochist.