Sunday, May 01, 2005

May 1st - Angels @ Twins

It's sunday evening here in Germany, which means it's baseball time for me. I'll start with an hour of Blue Jays @ Yankees and then change to Angels @ Twins (Finally an early Angels game!), maybe switching to Red Sox @ Rangers during the commercial break.

Angels @ Twins
The Angels lost two in a row and now have to win against Cy Young winner Johan Santana, who's on a 17 game winning streak) to avoid the sweep. The Angels' pitcher will be A-Rod new best friend Bartolo Colon. Let's hope he will not make new friends within the Twins lineup today (Justin Morneau may be a candidate).

The game's a great pitching match-up so far. Santana has just started to get some strike outs, when Vladdi hits a ball of the left field foul pole for a homerun. 1-0 Angels
Jose Molina leads of the 6th and is looking for the heat. He gets it and hits a long homerun to left. 2-0 Angels. That were the homeruns #4 & #5 allowed by Santana this year. So no smallball for the Angels today.
Bartolo Colon continues to look good. He has just allowed one hit so far (a single) and gets a ton of groundballs. He also throws a lot of two-seam-fastballs and gets good calls from the home plate umpire.
Santana goes 1-2-3 in the 7th, so Colon doesn't get much rest this inning.
But it looks like he doesn't need any rest as he strikes out Castro on a 96mph heater. After a short scare on a fly ball to the track in right, Colon strikes out Morneau again on a generous call.
Santana makes a bid to strike out the side, but finally walks Jeff DaVanon.
By the way, Santana may be a great pitcher, but his pick-up move is so slow, a runner might get picked off but still make it to second before the first baseman has the ball.
You cannot say the same about Redman's throw to second. DaVanon is caught stealing to end the inning.
Meanwhile, in Chicago, this happend with two out:
Grand Slam, walk, walk, homerun
and within 1/3 of an inning, Mark Prior raises his extraordinary 1.29 ERA to an ordinary 3.75 Ouch!
Colon (who had just throws 84 pitches) gets another out, when Jones hits a high chopper. Colon jumps high, but can't get it, and hurts his ankle (probably) on the play. He leaves the game and Scot Shields comes in the game with one man on 1st.
Shields runs the count full and the Twins get lucky when a hit draws Figgins to the bag and instead of a double play it's runners at the corners with one out.
Shields falls behind, 2-0, 3-1 and walks pinch hitter Mauer to load the bases.
Sciosia decides he needs a K and calls to the bullpen for K-Rod.
K-Rod throws two sliders that freeze pinch hitter LeCroy and the count is 1-1. Then, on another slider, LeCroy hits it up the middle, but Cabrera is there and the Angels get just what they needed, a double play. Puh!
Santana won't win today, he's replaced by Rincon. The Angels do nothing and K-Rod starts the Bottom of the 9th by serving up a hanging slider that Stewart takes out. 2-1 Angels
K-Rod falls behind, 3-1 to the next hitter, 3-2. Punto hits a ball foul and then another ball to Erstad for the first out. 2-2 to Lew Ford, fouls on off, then hits a tough one to McPherson, who makes a good throw to Erstand, two outs. 1-2 to Morneau, then Morneau strikes out on a slider.
So the Angels avoid the sweep, stay in first place in their division.
Santana loses for the first time since last July. It's a pity, because he pitches a very good game, only made two mistakes, so he certainly didn't deserve the L today.


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