It was quite unexpected for Angels starter Hector Santiago to pitch six innings of shutout ball against the first-place Oakland Athletics. Many analysts assumed it would be a "bullpen game" as Hector coming back from the minors with an ERA north of six. Well both things happened. It was the best start of Santiago's Halo career and it was also a bullpen game.
Wow. Then later on, much later on Collin Cowgill hit a walk off home run with two outs in the bottom of the fourteenth inning. Totally unexpected. Each inning started with an Angels batter getting on and moving over and then something going wrong. It was a repeating joke, a broken record (oldtimers saying, get some vinyl, scratch it and see what I mean). But then the one inning where nobody was on base and there were two outs and two strikes, Cowgill drops one over the fence, a foot or two past Cespedes standing there going "HUH?" ...it was a blast.
Then Cowgill got interviewed by Alex Curry, soaked in Gatorade and still made it to the dugout before the clock struck Midnight by like eleven minutes.
On a night that the Angels had terrible base running, they got amazing relief pitching against the regressing Athletics. By the fourteenth inning the crowd had dwindled to about the size of the average Oakland Coliseum crowd. Kevin Jepsen, Joe Smith and Fernando Salas each pitched a scoreless inning of relief. Cam Bedrosian and Cory Rasmus tossed two scoreless frames apiece, Rasmus getting the W. Only Mike Morin got touched up for a run, but it tied the game in the eighth. OF course, the Angels had so many scoring opportunities that no pitcher shall be blamed here.
In the Seventh Inning the Angels broke a scoreless tie when Josh Hamilton singled in Mike Trout. The elation was immediately killed when Pujols ran from 2B and thru the 3B coach's stop sign to be easily tagged out at the plate. Later in the game Yoenis Cespedes threw out Howie Kendrick on a play you will see in highlight reels for years to come - although the pleasure knowing we won the game will be ours alone to enjoy.
It was a crazy four hour, thirty-nine minutes of watching the AL's best team regress to the mean and the Angels pitching figure it all out before the hitting. Maybe Pujols gets benched or moved down in the order. Maybe Raul Ibañez gets DFA'd. After his 0 for 6 game (with 5 LOB), maybe David Freese gets moved down in the order. After his 0 for 5 night (with 3 LOB) maybe Howie never bats lead off again.
The only non-starting pitchers who didn't get into the game were UI John McDonald and Closer Ernesto Frieri, he having pitched in four consecutive victories. Light up the Halo for the fifth night, er, morning in a row.
OH AND ONE LAST THING... if you needed a reminder, Cowgill was once a member fo the A's and was waived long ago... as in wave bye bye to that baseball going over your head... Good Night!