Angels 11 Dodgers 14
In the midst of a season slipping off the rails, the Angels can usually find solace in a competitive semi-annual affair with their crosstown boys in blue. Saturday’s mound matchup featured pocket aces in Dylan Bundy and Clayton Kershaw: if the squads were to have a duel, this would be as good as it gets.
The game started as expected through the first three, but it soon became clear the Dodgers would be in the driver’s seat. The blue man group plated eight runs in the 4th inning and five runs in the 5th, pouring it on with a bevy of well-placed singles, walks, an Angels error, and a bases-clearing double. Dylan Bundy was pulled in the 4th having given up four runs on six hits, and voluntary fireman (sarcasm) Steve Cishek couldn’t strand the inherited runners. Cishek and Felix Peña combined to give up another seven (!!) runs and record five outs, just for good measure. Nothing really interesting happened, except that Mookie Betts took a baseball glove to the beans on a 3rd base tag from Jose Rojas in the 4th. I hope he already had kids, because that one looked like it hurt!
Soon, the score became so absurd that Taylor Ward decided to bunt with the Angels down 13-0. Joe Maddon got ejected. It was wild!
All hope appeared to be lost (and was at this point that the present writer turned his TV set to a certain Disney movie based in the Great Barrier Reef), but the Angels just kept on swimming.
The fans still in attendance sure got their money’s worth, because Angels hitters scratched, gnawed, and chipped away at the Dodgers’ bullpen and scored 11 runs in the 6th and 7th inning combined. Of note, Jon Jay, Juan Lagares, and Phil Gosselin all reached base multiple times. The icing on the cake was Jose Rojas’ first career home run, which went 433 feet to the right-center bleachers and scored three. After a rocky start, Rojas is finding his groove and is now sporting a 88 wRC+ despite starting the year hitless through 17 at-bats.
The Angels couldn’t finish what they started but showed some serious fight as the game progressed. Frankly, it’s hard to believe this game was even competitive (you’ll have to see the box score to really believe it) and despite losing, the Angels have positive takeaways to walk away with. Losing to the Dodgers won’t ever suck, though.
See you tomorrow afternoon. Until then.