Opening Day (April 1, 2013) is 88 days away. We are counting down the 100 Walk Off Home Runs in Angels franchise history. Today we look at #88...
May 27, 2005 - For seven innings, this was kind of an ordinary game, really, all things considered...
Steve Finley singled home Chone Figgins in the bottom of the first. The Royals tied it in the third and made it 2-1 in the fourth. In the seventh Paul Byrd gave up two runs on three hits, the second on a passed ball. The Angels went meekly to reliever Ambiorix Burgos (no relation to Peter Bourjous) in the bottom of the seventh.
Down 4-1 in the eighth, though, the Angels got a little action. Orlando Cabrera had an infield single and Adam Kennedy doubled him home. AK scored later on and it was 4-3 in KC's favor after eight. Maybe this thing is doable?
Lefty reliever Jake Woods had gotten three straight batters in the eighth and led off the ninth inducing a seven-pitch groundout from Mark Teahen. At 27 pitches, Mike Scioscia went to the pen and brought in Esteban Yan.
Solo homer by John Buck. 5-3 Royals. Oh but wait, let's really empty the stadium... Single, Groundout, Single, Single and a throwing error on Garret Anderson scores four runs. Royals 8, Angels 3, Esteban Yan still cruddy.
While the Friday night attendance of 40,834 was recorded, you gotta figure that at this point they didn't really care about the Big Bang Fireworks show after the game. The bottom of the ninth started with a walk and an error on a certain DP grounder hit by Bengie Molina to Angel Berroa, statistically one of the worst players ever. Reliever Mike Wood faced Dallas McPherson who singled in a run and gave up a single to O-Cab to load the bases. So it is 8-4 and the tying run is at the plate in the bottom of the ninth. Adam Kennedy grounds out to Short Stop... except it is Angel Berroa again and he throws the ball past 2B to clear the bases. 2 errors in one inning! Chone Figgins then tied the game with a single to score Kennedy standing at 3B.
So now it is 8-8 and Mike Scioscia has Darin Erstad bunt Figgins over. With one out, Royals manger Bob Schaefer brings in closer Mike McDougal who intentionally walks Steve Finley and induces two groundouts from GA and Rivera. Scot Shields pitched a 1-2-3 top of the tenth and the bottom of the inning opened with Bengie Molina striking out looking on full count.
McDougal had thrown 16 pitches, the first four being intentional balls to Frosty. Dallas McPherson took the 17th pitch for Ball One and deposited the 18th pitch down the line for a walkoff homerun. It was supposed to be a taste of what was to come from a much-touted rookie, but it was almost all he did for the team between injuries and Minor League Awards.