Angels go quietly in series finale at Fenway
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BOSTON -- The Red Sox finished a disjointed homestand in sound fashion, riding a strong performance by Wade Miley and yet another big game by Mike Napoli to a 6-1 victory over the Angels in Sunday afternoon's rubber match of a three-game series.
Miley pitched 4 2/3 no-hit innings until a single by C.J. Cron.
Napoli's two-run blast to center in the bottom of the second snapped a scoreless tie. In the eighth, he clubbed a two-run double off the Green Monster.
Lefty Hector Santiago turned in a quality effort for the Angels, holding the Red Sox to seven hits and three runs while striking out six over 6 2/3 innings.
After losing three of the first four to start the homestand, the Red Sox won the last two to finish at 3-3.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Napoli continues to torment Angels: Napoli's latest moonshot gave him five homers on the homestand, including four in the last three games. Since leaving the Angels, Napoli has 11 doubles, 18 homers and 36 RBIs against his former team.
Coming up empty: Johnny Giavotella hit a pinch-hit single with one out in the eighth, just his fourth hit in the last 32 at-bats, but Erick Aybar followed with an inning-ending double play to keep the deficit at two. And the Angels' offense plated three runs or fewer for the 24th time in 44 games this season. They entered the series finale ranked 28th in the Majors in OPS, then got their only run on a sixth-inning double by Mike Trout.
Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
Angels break even, but expect more
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BOSTON -- The Angels believe they're a great team, and they proved as much throughout the regular season last year. But seven weeks into 2015, they're average. That's no assessment; it's fact. They split their 10-game road trip on the East Coast and are now 22-22.
"We're playing at .500," Angels catcher Chris Iannetta said, "and we haven't played anywhere near our potential."
Iannetta was referring mainly to the offense. The Angels had the most productive lineup in baseball last year while reeling off a Major League-leading 98 wins, but they entered the weekend series at Fenway Park with the lowest OPS in the game. They scored 12 runs in Friday's opener -- and nine in an eventful top of the fifth -- then plated just four over the next 18 innings.
Red Sox lefty Wade Miley entered Sunday's finale with a 5.10 ERA, then retired the first 14 batters in order and finished giving up just one run in eight innings of a 6-1 victory.
"What do you think," Albert Pujols said, "that we're playing Nintendo and we're going to score 13 runs every night?"
The Angels' most recent loss encapsulated their entire season thus far. They got a solid start, as Hector Santiago gave up three runs in 6 2/3 innings for his sixth quality start in nine outings. They got a shoddy performance from a middle reliever (in this case, Cam Bedrosian, who served up a game-changing two-run double to Mike Napoli in the eighth). And they got very little offensively besides Mike Trout, whose sixth-inning RBI double accounted for just one of four hits.
Weaver aims to keep cruising vs. Ross,
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The Padres head down I-5 after a series at Dodger Stadium for a three-game series starting Monday against the Angels. This will be the team's first trip to Anaheim since 2009 when they were swept in three games.
Tyson Ross makes his first start against the Angels since 2012 when he was with the A's. Ross has allowed three or fewer runs in eight of his first nine starts of the season.
He'll be opposed by Jered Weaver, who has come on strong lately. He started the year 0-4 with a 6.29 ERA in his first six starts, but has given up a combined four runs on 13 hits and four walks in 23 1/3 innings in his last three outings. He's always been great at Angel Stadium (70-29, 2.67 ERA). Last time he pitched there, he shut out the Astros.
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