Pujols, Angels use 5-run 8th inning to rally past O's 6-2
BALTIMORE (AP) — On a steamy day that proved too daunting for Angels starting pitcher Tyler Skaggs, 38-year-old Albert Pujols coolly delivered the game's pivotal hit.
Pujols' RBI double highlighted a five-run eighth inning, and Los Angeles beat the Orioles 6-2 Saturday to extend Baltimore's latest losing streak to seven games.
Gametime temperature was 93, and the humidity was unforgiving. Sweating profusely, Skaggs asked out after using 79 pitches to get through five innings.
"It's definitely one of the hottest games I've thrown in a long time," Skaggs said. "I was just tired. I told (manager Mike Scioscia) I rarely come out and say this, but I'm exhausted."
Skaggs added: "I probably could have gone another inning, but there was no point. My team picked me up."
Playing their 3,000th game under Scioscia, the Angels trailed 2-1 before using three hits, three walks and a hit batter to take control against the free-falling Orioles.
After Mychal Givens (0-6) issued a pair of one-out walks, Pujols tied it with his 632nd career double , a drive that handcuffed right fielder Danny Valencia. The hit tied David Ortiz for 10th place on the all-time list — and tied the game.
An intentional walk followed, and the go-ahead run scored when Chris Young hit into a force play at third base. Tanner Scott hit Martin Maldonado with a pitch to force in a run, and David Fletcher capped the uprising with a two-run single.
"It was good clutch-hitting that inning," Scioscia said. "I think the biggest hit there was Albert."
The Angels lost six straight before coming to Baltimore, and now they appear to have their mojo back.
"Whenever you can grind out runs late in the game to come back and win, it's exciting," Fletcher said. "It's definitely something to give us confidence."
Justin Anderson (2-2) pitched 1 1/3 innings to earn the win.
The Orioles' shoddy play in the eighth inning explains why Baltimore owns the worst record in the majors. Baltimore has five losing streaks of at least six games, is 0-15 against the AL West and has lost 17 of 18 at home.
Afterward, manager Buck Showalter was straining to find the positive aspect of another dreadful defeat.
"When you only score two runs — again — you're going to have to pitch real well, which we really did for seven innings," he said. "So, I'll take that out of it."
Baltimore's Andrew Cashner threw 105 pitches. He gave up one run in six innings and left with the lead, but now has gone six straight starts without a victory.
"To say I'm not frustrated, I'd be lying, but for me, wins and losses are out of my control," the right-hander said.
Scioscia is the sixth manager in major league history to manage 3,000 games with one team.
"You don't think about it," Scioscia said about his longevity. "It's 3,000, one game at a time."
TAKE A SEAT
Struggling Orioles 2B Jonathan Schoop (.197) was given the day off, and will likely be rested Sunday before Monday's off day. Showalter said he wanted the 2017 All-Star to "reset."
Angels: RHP/DH Shohei Ohtani, who has a Grade 2 sprain of the ulnar collateral ligament of his right elbow, batted in a simulated game Saturday and did not experience any setbacks, Scioscia said. The team hopes Ohtani can avoid Tommy John surgery. . LHP John Lamb has a torn ulnar collateral ligament and will undergo surgery in Los Angeles. . RHP Jake Jewell will be out at least six months after undergoing right ankle surgery Friday. . RHP Garrett Richards (hamstring) allowed five runs over 3 1/3 innings in a rehab start Friday with High-A Inland Empire. "He lost some of his command as the outing went on, but physically he felt great," Scioscia said.
Orioles: RHP Darren O'Day opted for surgery to repair a left hamstring strain, ending his season. ... RHP Chris Tillman (back) was scheduled to make his third rehab start, this time with Triple-A Norfolk, on Saturday.
Angels: RHP Deck McGuire (0-0, 6.08 ERA) makes his third major league start in the series finale Sunday.
Orioles: RHP Kevin Gausman (3-6, 4.20 ERA) lost his last four decisions and has not completed seven innings in any of his last eight starts.