Angels 15, Rangers 4
The trio of youngsters at the bottom of the Los Angeles Angels' lineup can hit and score. Their fill-in starting pitcher was also pretty good.
Rookie first baseman Mark Trumbo homered and drove in four runs with three hits, Hank Conger had two hits and scored twice and No. 9 hitter Peter Bourjos had a homer among his four hits as the Angels broke out for a 15-4 victory over the Texas Rangers on Tuesday night.
''Guys in the dugout were talking about how good the young guys are doing,'' said Matt Palmer, the Angels' starter who limited Texas to one run and three hits over six innings.
It was the first home loss for the defending American League champions.
Add in veterans Alberto Callaspo and Vernon Wells with the bottom trio, and the Angels' last five hitters combined for 12 runs, 13 hits and 11 RBIs. All had multiple hits and only Wells failed to score more than once.
''This was obviously a breakout offensive night,'' manager Mike Scioscia said. ''They were hitting the ball to all parts of the field.''
Conger is a rookie catcher and Bourjos just misses out on being classified as a rookie this year since he made his major league debut with 51 games last season after being called up in August.
Leadoff hitter Maicer Izturis homered for the Angels, who have won 10 of their last 13 games.
Los Angeles and Texas are tied atop the AL West with 11-6 records. The finale of their three-game series is Wednesday night.
The Rangers had won their first seven home games in a season for the first time, including the series-opening 7-1 victory Monday night after returning from a nine-game road trip.
Colby Lewis (1-2), pitching for the first time in 10 days after being the first player ever to go on Major League Baseball's paternity leave list, gave up four runs in five erratic innings.
''I felt great. I fell behind hitters, and they took advantage of it, that was it,'' Lewis said.
Palmer (1-0), a right-hander making his second start for injured Scott Kazmir, struck out three and walked one.
''It was a great effort by Matt. He had the ball moving on both sides of the plate,'' Scioscia said. ''He just pitched. That's good to see.''
Lewis walked Izturis on five pitches to start the game, then fielded Bobby Abreu's comebacker and one-hopped the throw to shortstop Elvis Andrus, who managed to gather the ball for the force at second base but couldn't turn the double play.
Callaspo drew the first of his two walks against Lewis in the second, then moved to third after a wild pitch compounded by catcher Yorvit Torrealba's throwing error. Trumbo followed with an RBI single.
The only 1-2-3 inning for Lewis came in the third, before Ian Kinsler's RBI single in the bottom of the inning tied the game. But Lewis walked Callaspo again in the fourth before Trumbo's towering homer put the Angels ahead to stay.
Izturis led off the fifth with his second homer of the season for a 4-1 lead.
Lewis was home in California in time for his daughter's birth last Wednesday, four days after his previous start, then went on the three-day paternity list Friday. He struck out three and walked three.
Mason Tobin took over for Lewis to start the sixth, and got only one out while giving up three runs before leaving because of pain in his right elbow. The rookie reliever is scheduled to have an MRI on Wednesday.
Callaspo had a one-out single off Tobin and scored on Trumbo's double before Conger walked.
Bourjos greeted reliever Michael Kirkman with an RBI single that got past left fielder David Murphy and rolled to the wall, an error that allowed Conger and Bourjos to score.
''They were all over the bases all night,'' Rangers manager Ron Washington said.
Bourjos, in a 5-for-30 slump before three hits Monday night, added a two-run homer in the seventh for a 13-1 lead.
''It's only April, but you want to come back and stay with them,'' Bourjos said. ''They have a good offense. ... Tonight, it was our night.''
Kazmir, sidelined by lower back soreness since giving up five runs in 1 2-3 innings in his only start this season April 3, threw three innings in an extended spring training game Wednesday. Scioscia said the left-hander threw only fastballs and that his velocity picked up during the outing. Kazmir is expected to throw again in four or five days.
Before Callaspo walked in the fourth, Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre barehanded a slow roller by Wells and made a strong throw while falling down for the first out of that inning.
Notes: The Angels designated INF Brandon Wood for assignment, clearing a roster spot so SS Erick Aybar can be reinstated from the DL Wednesday. ... Texas had four errors, its most since five on July 29, 2008. ... Izturis, the leadoff hitter, is 12 for 21 (.571) in the five games on the trip. He had multiple hits the first four games, but did walk twice to go with his homer. ... Heavy rain and some hail started to fall about the same time the Angels were set to take batting practice. The field was covered and the game started only 11 minutes late. The game-time temperature was 70 degrees, more than 20 degrees cooler than when the Rangers were wrapping up their BP about 2 hours earlier.