Angels 6, Rangers 5

With the teams’ aces pitching in other games, Albert Pujols teed

off.

Pujols hit his fourth homer and Trevor Bell pitched into the

fifth inning in a bid to earn the Angels’ No. 5 starter role,

leading Los Angeles to a 6-5 victory over the Texas Rangers

Sunday.

”That was a 2-iron,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.

Both managers chose to keep their aces from facing a division

rival. Instead, the Rangers’ Yu Darvish gave up four runs and six

hits in five innings in an intrasquad game. The Angels’ C.J.

Wilson, former Rangers ace, worked five innings and allowed six

hits and three runs – two earned – in a minor league game.

Randal Grichuk’s RBI single in the ninth lifted the Angels to a

win. Jorge Cantu hit a two-run homer in the eighth to snap a 2-all

tie but the Rangers scored three in the top of the ninth.

Bell allowed three hits and two walks in 4 1-3 scoreless

innings, his first start and fourth appearance. He struck out

three.

”He pitched inside well today,” Scioscia said. ”That’s what

he’s got to do to stay up here. He pitched with much better command

today.”

Bell is one of a handful of pitchers hoping to secure the fifth

spot in the Angels’ rotation. But he appears to be well behind

right-handers Garrett Richards and Jerome Williams in the race.

”I was pumped,” said Bell, who pitched in 19 games for the

Angels in 2011 and posted a 1-1 record with a 3.94 ERA. ”I wanted

to get out there and show what I could do.”

Texas had gone ahead with three runs in the top of the ninth,

two

coming on Greg Miclat’s double off Jason Isringhausen.

Jorge Cantu had given the Angels a 4-2 lead with a two-run homer

in the bottom of the

eighth. Texas’ Dusty Brown hit his second spring homer, a

two-run

homer off reliever Kevin Jepsen in the top of the eighth to tie

it 2-all.

Mark Hamburger worked two innings and allowed two runs, one

earned, and gave up one hit.

NOTE: Scioscia said the two main combatants for the fifth

starting spot in the rotation would both pitch tomorrow, with

Williams pitching in a minor league game and Richards facing

Colorado

at Tempe.