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Well the Angels were the surprise of the weekend as they were able to steal 2 of 3 games from the Dodgers. The Angels can definitely try to use this as a boost in their step as they look to get past their 4 game sweep from the Rays. However, not all wins are created equally. There were some concerning factors in the Angels’ two wins.
The Angels won 9-2 on Friday, as Canning was able to go 5.2 innings and give up only 1 run. Sandoval was then handed the ball and closed out the game, tossing 3.1 innings. Solid effort if you look at the scoreline. Saturday was chaotic as Bundy was dominant through 3 innings but was only able to record one out in the fourth. Bundy ended the night have 6 earned runs, while Cishek and Pena gave up 2 and 5 runs in relief. The only bright side from Saturday came from their bats as they roared back from a 13-0 deficit to make it a 14-11 ball game. The game ended in a loss but it felt like an emotional victory. Sunday saw the Angels get a win against Bauer in a slim 2-1 victory. This was perhaps the most meaningful win of the series as they Angels proved they can win the close games with a mix of relievers.
So the Angels won the Freeway Series against the reigning World Series Champions, how could there be any negatives to that? Well, the Angels didn’t look like they were ever in control. Their bats were the stars this weekend and that obviously expected to be the case. But one hit here or there and the Angels could have very well been swept.
On Friday, the scoreline showed a seemingly comfortable 9-2 win. The early innings were anything but comfortable. Up until the 6th inning, the Angels biggest lead was 5-1. Their 4 run 2nd inning gave them some room for error and Canning was definitely testing those boundaries. Throughout the entire game, the Dodgers had 11 at-bats with runners in scoring position. They were only able to capitalize on one hit and ended up stranding 10 runners on base. While Canning only gave up 1 run, he walked 3 and allowed 6 hits over 5.2 innings. He was not in control but somehow managed to keep the damage to only one run.
Saturday showed the holes in the Angels’ bullpen. After Bundy’s dominant 3 innings of work, he could not get out of the 4th. He gave up 6 runs on five hits. Then Cishek and Pena combined for 1.2 innings of relief, 7 runs, and 5 walks. Their bats made the game astonished close after being down 13-0 at one point.
Sunday saw more of the same from the Angels pitching staff. Quintana was the starting pitcher for the Angels and gave up only 1 run. However, he only went 4 innings and he gave up 5 walks. The Angels were fortunate that the Dodgers couldn’t find a timely hit since they went 1 for 11 with runners in scoring position and they left 12 men on base.
Pitching and defense is the age old problem for the Angels
The Angels also ended the series with 2 errors which puts them at 30 for the season and first in the league for most errors committed. Pitching and defense is the age old narrative for the Angels. On the bright side, despite all the chances the Dodgers had, the Angels were still able to limit their damage. They might not be as lucky the next time but a win is a win even if it comes at the expense of Dodgers’ recent struggles.
The Angels take on the Astros next which will prove if they are going to be early contenders for the division or if they are going to hover around until September.