ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Rookie Chris Archer put an end to the Los Angeles Angels’ four-game winning streak.
Archer pitched seven strong innings, David DeJesus scored twice and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Angels 4-1 Wednesday night.
“He’s got good stuff,” Los Angeles manager Mike Scioscia said. “He’s got a nice, easy delivery. His fastball is really live, and a terrific slider. He pitched a strong game for those guys.”
Garrett Richards (4-6) gave up four runs on seven hits and three walks in 3 1-3 innings for the Angels, who lost third baseman Chris Nelson to a strained right hamstring.
“It was just an off night,” Richards said. “I just didn’t have it from the beginning. Arm felt good. Body felt good. I just wasn’t there tonight. I’m not going to take this as a step back. I’m just going to move forward from it.”
Richards was coming off a start last Friday against Seattle where he threw 7 1-3 scoreless innings in a 2-0 victory.
“He just didn’t seem as crisp tonight and got into some tough counts,” Scioscia said. “Just couldn’t seem to make that good pitch when he needed to. Today it wasn’t pitch selection, it was execution.”
Nelson was hurt running out a grounder in the seventh. Scioscia said the infielder will go on the disabled list.
“I felt something pulling,” Nelson said.
Archer (8-5) allowed one run and five hits while striking out five. For the fifth time in his last 10 starts, the rookie right-hander did not walk a batter.
Archer breezed through the first six innings, scattering three singles and facing 20 batters, only two over the minimum.
Tampa Bay, the AL wild-card leader, had lost three in a row.
“Honestly, the pressure is always the same whether we win three in a row or lose three in a row,” Archer said. “I’m still trying to go out there and execute pitches regardless of previous games.”
Fernando Rodney pitched the ninth, striking out two for his 31st save.
DeJesus, playing his fifth game since the Rays got him in a trade with Washington, had two of the Rays’ eight hits and drove in his first run. Ben Zobrist also had two hits and an RBI.
DeJesus led off the Tampa Bay first with a double and scored on Matt Joyce’s sacrifice fly.
In the fourth, DeJesus hit an RBI single off Richards’ right leg. The Rays scored three times in the inning, and an error on shortstop Erick Aybar put the Rays up 4-0.
Mike Trout and Josh Hamilton opened the Angels seventh with singles. Kole Calhoun hit a sacrifice fly.
Trout had his 51st multihit game of the season and raised his batting average against right-handed pitchers to .332. He is hitting .333 against lefties.
Hamilton’s single in the seventh extended his road hitting streak to a career-high 15 games.
NOTES: Richards said his leg is fine. … Angels RHP Jerome Williams, skipped one time through the rotation, threw three scoreless innings. He is scheduled to start Saturday at Milwaukee.