Shoemaker returns with 5 scoreless, Angels beat Rangers 3-1
ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) – Matt Shoemaker pitched five scoreless innings in his first start for the Angels in more than five months, Taylor Ward snapped a scoreless tie with his seventh-inning homer and Los Angeles beat the Texas Rangers 3-1 on Monday night.
Ward’s two-run homer was part of a three-run seventh that made rookie reliever Taylor Cole (1-2) a first-time winner. Cole went 1 1/3 innings after relieving Shoemaker.
All of the Los Angeles runs came off Zac Curtis (0-1), the third pitcher for the Rangers on a night they started the game with two scoreless innings by reliever Jeffrey Springs before fellow rookie Ariel Jurado‘s four innings.
Shoemaker had missed 134 games since going on the disabled list because of a right forearm strain after his first start of the season March 31. The right-hander missed the final 3 1/2 months last season because of the same issue.
After singles by two of the first three batters he faced, Shoemaker retired 13 of the last 14. He walked Shin-Soo Choo with two outs in the third before Rougned Odor grounded into a double play – the MLB-best 148th turned by the Angels this season. Shoemaker struck out three, throwing 42 of 62 pitches for strikes.
Blake Parker, the sixth Angels pitcher, worked the ninth for his 14th save.
Jose Fernandez led off the Angels seventh with a single and Ward, their 2015 first-round draft pick in his 18th big league game, lined a shot into the left field seats for his third homer. Curtis then struck out Jose Briceno, but the Los Angeles catcher reached on a wild pitch and later scored on David Fletcher‘s single.
Joey Gallo had an RBI double that ricocheted off the right field wall in the bottom of the inning, and Texas had the bases loaded with two outs when Justin Anderson struck out pinch-hitter Ronald Guzman.
Angels: OF Justin Upton was held out of his second game since a mild concussion Saturday. “Better but he’s not quite ready,” manager Mike Scioscia said. “There’s a protocol when there’s a concussion that you have to follow.” … RHP Shohei Ohtani was evaluated after coming out of his pitching return early Sunday, and Scioscia is hopeful the two-way rookie will be good to make his next scheduled start Sunday. Scioscia said Ohtani’s elbow feels great.
Rangers: Utility infielder Hanser Alberto is expected to be activated off the DL on Tuesday. He has been out since Aug. 25, a day after a right hamstring strain on the same day he was recalled from Triple-A Round Rock.
A matchup of lefty starters when Andrew Heaney (8-8) pitches for the Angels and Mike Minor (10-7) goes for the Rangers. Heaney, 0-3 with a 10.38 in three previous starts at Texas, threw six scoreless innings in a win Thursday at AL West-leading Houston. Minor will make his 25th start after missing all of 2015-16 (torn labrum left shoulder) and pitching exclusively in relief for Kansas City last year.
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