C.J. Wilson abstained from alcohol, tobacco, and opposing base-runners on Tuesday night, delivering a straight-edged, one-hit beatdown to the pitiful Athletics lineup on Tuesday night. The A's are one of the few major-league teams with worse offensive numbers than the Angels this season, and that gulf is now just a little bit wider, because the Halos equaled their offensive output over the last three games against a random of assortment of pitchers that no one has ever heard of before. It was a feel-good 5-0 win, just enough to build you up, before they let you...you know how the song goes.
The offense showered CJ with a lavish three-run lead before he even took the field. Six of the first seven batters either walked or singled, and it could have been even more were it not for Mike Scioscia's Rollerball-inspired running game, which committed two of three outs on the bases. The Angels got one more on an Albert Pujols homer in the fourth, and some miscellaneous reliever plunked Erick Aybar with the bases loaded to force in one more in the seventh. Aybar left the game as a precaution--you can't be too careful with a $35 million investment.
I've been pretty skeptical of Wilson all along, but the guy has been getting it done, at least so far. Right now he is probably the least of the many long-term worries for avid Angel fans. It's hard to believe that Wilson was a mediocre middle reliever on an all-around horrible pitching staff just a few years back, and maybe that's the source of my prejudice. The Rangers won, by the way, so the Angels will have to settle for eight games back as of tonight. At least the bleeding appears to have stopped, Albert Pujols has started to hit balls out of the infield again, and a winning record doesn't seem quite so impossible as it did 24 hours ago.