Mike Trout is hot, and that’s bad news for opposing teams.
"He’s pretty good," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said with a smile after Trout hit two home runs and drove in four runs as Los Angeles defeated the Cleveland Indians 9-3 on Tuesday night.
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Trout’s three-run homer in the fifth broke a 3-all tie and capped a four-run inning. He added a leadoff homer in the seventh. The two-time All-Star was 3 for 5, extending his hitting streak to 12 games, and has reached base safely in 35 of his last 36 contests.
"I think, for his sake, they should rest him tomorrow," Indians manager Terry Francona joked. "He’s got a chance to be a pretty good player, so I don’t think they want to tire him out."
Rookie Matt Shoemaker (4-1) remained unbeaten as a starter, allowing two runs in a career-high eight innings. The right-hander is 4-0 in seven major-league starts, six this season. The right-hander, who lost in a relief appearance in April, recorded a career-high 10 strikeouts.
Josh Tomlin (4-4) gave up six runs in 5 1-3 innings. The loss ended Cleveland’s 10-game home winning streak.
Trout capped an eight-pitch at-bat in the fifth by lining a 2-2 delivery over the wall in right. He homered into the bleachers in left-center in the seventh off Mark Lowe for his 16th of the season and the second multi-homer game of his career. The first came on Aug. 30, 2011, against Seattle.
Trout is batting .410 (34 for 83) over his last 22 games and has raised his average from .264 to .311.
"I’m being patient and squaring up some balls," he said. "I’m not anxious. I’m just comfortable. I’m not trying to do too much. That’s really helping."
Scioscia knew it was only a matter of time before Trout started producing.
"This game’s not easy and even as talented as Mike is you’re going to have some cycles," Scioscia said. "He was struggling maybe for that 100 to 120 at-bat range that a lot of people were focused on, but you can see the guy, he’s bounced back and hopefully he can keep it for a long time."
The game was delayed by rain for 11 minutes before the bottom of the ninth, which cost Shoemaker a chance at his first career complete game. He was warming up when the umpires called for the tarp and Scioscia chose to go with Ernesto Frieri when play resumed.
"It’s unfortunate, but I understand," Shoemaker said. "As soon as I got out there it starts raining when I’m warming up. There’s nothing you can do about that, out of my control."
Shoemaker made the Angels’ opening day roster and was optioned to Triple-A Salt Lake on May 25 after going 2-0 in three starts. He was recalled three days later and has won two of three starts since. Shoemaker allowed five hits and walked one.
Indians left fielder Michael Brantley was scratched from the lineup, and had tests on the head and neck injuries he sustained Monday while trying to break up a double play. The team had no update following the game.
Howie Kendrick, who had three hits and drove in two runs, and Kole Calhoun, who was 4 for 5 with two RBIs, hit solo homers for the Angels.
Lonnie Chisenhall, who entered the game in an 0-for-13 slump, hit a solo homer in the fourth that put Cleveland ahead 2-1.
Shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera’s team-high 13th error helped Los Angeles take the lead. Following David Freese’s leadoff single, Raul Ibanez hit a slow roller toward second base. Cabrera, playing to the right side of the bag, tried to tag Freese but dropped the ball, leaving runners at first and second. Calhoun’s one-out single tied the game before Trout took over.
"I hit it good," he said. "I let the ball get deep. I think they were trying to go away and it got a little bit more of the plate."
Albert Pujols’ RBI groundout in the first gave Los Angeles the lead. David Murphy’s ground ball tied the game in the second.
Chisenhall, who is hitting .368, cooled off after going 5 for 5 with three homers and nine RBIs against Texas on June 9, going hitless in four straight games.
Fans paraded around the field with their dogs before the game in the Indians’ annual Puppypalooza promotion. The Indians announced approximately 300 dogs were in attendance.
NOTES:Josh Hamilton was the DH for Los Angeles while Ibanez played left field. … The Indians signed OF Bradley Zimmer, their No. 1 draft pick and the 21st overall selection. He will report to Class A Mahoning Valley. … Angels LHP Tyler Skaggs (strained right hamstring) did not throw a simulated game, as scheduled, but will have a bullpen session Wednesday. … Game-time temperature was 91 degrees. … Ryan Raburn started in left field for Cleveland. … Angels LHP C.J. Wilson (7-6) takes on Indians RHP Justin Masterson (4-4) in the third game of the series Wednesday.