Angels 6 Royals 2
Hallelujah, praise Cthulhu, the Angels are out of Houston and are playing baseball in Kansas City. Anywhere and any team but Houston these days, and the Royals pass both of those tests. With the Halos no longer facing the Astros bullies, they could finally get back to the task of winning baseball games.
Give the Angels credit: they’re really, really good learners. For instance, they must have been taking notes on how Houston knocked around Tim Lincecum early, and how they jumped out to a nice, early lead. Yes, they studied this act of merciless baseball and attempted to recreate it on the Royals’ starter, Ian Kennedy.
In the first inning, Albert Pujols had a two-run single, Daniel Nava had a sac fly, and Carlos Perez got back into Mike Scioscia’s good graces with an RBI single for himself. It wasn’t exactly a landslide, but it was a 4-0 outpouring after half an inning that, with a good enough night from the pitching staff, would be more than enough to end up with a victory.
Hector Santiago took the hill tonight, looking to continue his nice year with the Angels and maybe raise his trade value in the meantime hint hint. He looked good, the typically sturdy and dependable Santiago, going 5.1 innings, with 5 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 4 BB and 5 Ks. That’ll do. You’d like to see those walks diminished, and maybe a bit more efficiency (he was at 100 pitches already in his 5.1 innings), but his only runs were off of a two-run bomb, and all in all, Hector did quite well for himself tonight.
Speaking of doing their job, the bullpen sure did theirs tonight. J.C. Ramirez, Fernando Salas, Cam Bedrosian and Huston Street were your 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th guys respectively, and none of them allowed so much as a hit, forget about runs. These guys closed the book early on the Royals, and they did it in their specific, assigned roles...ROLES! Mike Scioscia needed to change his baseball pants.
Just for the sake of insurance, Albert Pujols decided to drive in a couple more runs in this contest, on RBI singles in the 7th and 9th innings. That’s a four RBI night for him, quite the groove he’s in.
A 6-2 performance against the reigning champs, with the bats getting their Halo Blitz on, and the pitching looking dreamy; quite a bit to like in this one, but more than anything, it’s a win. Let the gentle, Monday night tears of sad Royals fans wash that rancid taste of Astros butt-kickings out of your mouth.