Angels put it all together in 8-3 win over Toronto
ANAHEIM (AP) — Ervin Santana pitched a four-hitter for his second complete game against Toronto this season and Mike Napoli homered to lead the Los Angeles Angels to an 8-3 victory over the Blue Jays on Tuesday night.
Santana (4-3) finished with 10 strikeouts, one off his career high, after getting staked to an early 5-0 lead.
Toronto’s first three hits against the right-hander came on first-pitch homers by Jose Bautista, Aaron Hill and Jeremy Reed.
Bobby Abreu and Erick Aybar each had two RBIs for the Angels.
Ricky Romero (4-2) threw 94 pitches over 5 1-3 innings, giving up seven runs and 11 hits and three walks.
In Santana’s complete-game victory over the Blue Jays on April 18 at Toronto, he allowed just three hits over the first eight innings and retired 17 consecutive batters before Adam Lind spoiled his shutout bid with a two-out homer in the ninth.
The Blue Jays, who lead the majors with 78 home runs, did not get their first hit until Bautista drove his 15th homer into the left field bullpen with one out in the fifth.
The 25-year-old left-hander, who grew up in East Los Angeles and was pitching in his home state for the first time as a major leaguer, had about 200 friends and family members cheering him on from the left field stands. But Romero retired only five of his first 13 batters and found himself behind 5-0 after just 33 pitches.
Abreu got things started with an RBI double in the first, and the Angels tacked on four more in the second. Reggie Willits hit an RBI single, Aybar drove in another run with a squeeze bunt, Howie Kendrick followed with a two-out RBI double and Abreu added a run-scoring single.
Toronto manager Cito Gaston did not get anybody up in the bullpen during the first five innings, deciding to stay with Romero in the hope he would straighten himself out. He struck out the side on 19 pitches in the fifth, but gave up Napoli’s seventh homer leading off the sixth. It snapped a string of 177 batters Romero had faced over his previous 41 innings without allowing a home run since Tampa Bay’s John Jaso connected for a two-run shot on April 24.
NOTES: RHP Josh Roenicke, who relieved Romero after Aybar’s RBI double, is the nephew of Angels bench coach Ron Roenicke. The Angels’ final run scored on Roenicke’s wild pitch in the seventh. … Reed started in LF and batted leadoff in place of Fred Lewis was scratched from Gaston’s original lineup because of a bunion on his left foot — the same malady that forced him to undergo surgery on his right foot in September 2008. … Willits started in CF in place of Torii Hunter, who was in Texas for his son Cameron’s high school graduation. … The Angels have allowed an AL-high 53 homers.
May 25, 2010