Angels Vs. Blue Jays: Albert Pujols Hits First Home Run, Halos Split With Toronto

The Angels open a six-game road trip beginning in Minnesota on Monday.

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Angels Vs. Blue Jays Final Score: Albert Pujols Homers In 4-3 Win

Albert Pujols finally hit his first home run, and the Los Angeles Angels held on to defeat the Toronto Blue Jays 4-3 on Sunday afternoon at Angel Stadium in Anaheim. The win was the second straight victory for the Angels, who salvaged a series split against Toronto.

Pujols drove a pitch from Drew Hutchison over the left field wall in the fith inning for a two-run shot that gave the Angels a 4-1 lead. It was his first of the season, and came in his 117th plate appearance of the season. It came one day after Halos manager Mike Scioscia gave his slugging first baseman a day off on Saturday.

Jerome Williams pitched into the seventh inning, allowing three runs (two earned) for his third straight win. Williams allowed eight hits and one walk while striking out four.

Scott Downs opened the ninth inning for the Angels, but after a J.P. Arencibia single back up the middle knocked Downs to the ground, the reliever left the game with an apparent left leg injury. LaTroy Hawkins recorded the final two outs for his first save of the season.

Each of the first four hitters in Sunday's lineup for the Angels scored a run: Mike Trout, Maicer Izturis, Pujols, and Kendrys Morales.

The Angels open a six-game road trip on Monday, facing the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. Jered Weaver gets the start for the Halos, facing Francisco Liriano for the Twins.

For all news and information regarding the Los Angeles Angels, please visit Halos Heaven. For updates and perspective regarding the Toronto Blue Jays, head on over to Bluebird Banter.

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Albert Pujols Hits First Home Run Of Season With Angels

The drought if finally over: Albert Pujols has hit his first home run with the Los Angeles Angels. With his club leading the Blue Jays by a score of 2-1 in the fifth inning, Pujols took a 2-2 slider from Drew Hutchinson and deposited it into the left field bullpen, just clearing the outfield wall for two runs. The Angels now lead 4-1 in the sixth.

The total number of hitters around Major League Baseball to hit a homer before Pujols: 273. Two hundred and seventy three!

Pujols' batting average is still sitting below .200 (.198), although it appears he may finally be showing signs of life at the plate. Those two runs driven in were the sixth and seventh RBIs of the year for him.

For all news and information regarding the Los Angeles Angels, please visit Halos Heaven. For updates and perspective regarding the Toronto Blue Jays, head on over to Bluebird Banter.

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Angels Vs. Blue Jays Starting Lineups: Albert Pujols Returns For Halos

The Los Angeles Angels look for their second straight win on Sunday afternoon as they host the Toronto Blue Jays in the finale of a four-game series at Angel Stadium in Anaheim. The Angels won on Saturday night and on Sunday, now with Albert Pujols, are looking for a series split with Toronto.

Jerome Williams gets the start for the Angels, looking to continue his great run of late. Williams in his last three starts is 2-0 with a 1.99 ERA and 18 strikeouts, including a complete game shutout on Tuesday against the Minnesota Twins, the first shutout for Williams in nine years. Drew Hutchison starts for Toronto.

Pujols has had a horrendous start to his season, the first year in a 10-year mega contract signed this winter. Pujols is hitting just .194/.237/.269 with no home runs and five RBI in 27 games, and he was given Saturday night off to regroup. Pujols is back in the lineup on Sunday for the Halos, batting third and playing first base. Here are Sunday's starting lineups:

Blue Jays (16-12)

Johnson 2B
Thames LF
Bautista RF
Lind DH
Encarnacion 1B
Lawrie 3B
Rasmus CF
Arencibia C
Vizquel SS

Angels (11-17)

Trout CF
Izturis 2B
Pujols 1B
Morales DH
Trumbo RF
Wells LF
Callaspo 3B
Aybar SS
Iannetta C

For all news and information regarding the Los Angeles Angels, please visit Halos Heaven. For updates and perspective regarding the Toronto Blue Jays, head on over to Bluebird Banter.

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Angels Vs. Blue Jays, Game 3 Final Score: With Albert Pujols Out Of Lineup, Halos Manage 6-2 Win

The slumping Albert Pujols got the night off on Saturday, but the Los Angeles Angels got along just fine without him, scoring their first runs in two games and winning by a final score of 6-2.

The Angels got their scoring started in the bottom of the second inning on an RBI single by Bobby Wilson. The Blue Jays answered back in the top of the fourth, tying things up on a Jose Bautista RBI single. Mike Trout put the angels ahead for good in the bottom of the fifth on a solo home run by Mike Trout.

The Halos tacked on three more runs in the bottom of the sixth on a rally that included a Mark Trumbo homer and a sacrifice fly by Trout. Adam Lind led off the top of the seventh with a home run, but 5-2 would be as close as the Blue Jays would get for the remainder of the game. The Angels tacked on one more insurance run in the bottom of the eighth when Kendrys Morales singled home Trout.

Trout, Trumbo, Wilson and Alberto Callaspo all had two-hit games, while Morales had three hits in the win. Torii Hunter, hitting in the No. 3 spot in lieu of Pujols, was 0-for-4 with a walk.

Los Angeles starter C.J. Wilson was quite effective, giving up two runs in eight innings of work on six hits and three walks, while striking out nine. Ernesto Frieri came in for the top of the ninth and sealed the deal for the Angels.

The Angels will attempt to salvage a series split as they go for a win in the series finale on Sunday.

For all news and information regarding the Los Angeles Angels, please visit Halos Heaven. For updates and perspective regarding the Toronto Blue Jays, head on over to Bluebird Banter.

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Angels Vs. Jays Starting Lineups: Albert Pujols Sits Against Toronto

If the last few days in Anaheim have told us anything, it's that there just might be a shutout Saturday night as the Los Angeles Angels host the Toronto Blue Jays at Angel Stadium. Albert Pujols has had a nightmare start for the Angels, hitting just .194/.237/.269 with no home runs in 27 games and 114 plate appearances. He gets the night off on Saturday night.

The last four Halos games have all featured shutouts, the first time in Angels history they have been involved in four consecutive shutouts. Unfortunately for the Angels, the last two games have seen shutouts by Blue Jays, as Brandon Morrow and Henderson Alvarez each added nine scoreless innings to their ledger in the first two games of this four-game weekend series. The Angels have gone 22 straight innings without scoring, and during that span have just 11 hits and two walks.

C.J. Wilson (3-2, 2.70 ERA) gets the start for the Angels, while Kyle Drabek (2-2, 2.40 ERA) tries to become the third straight Toronto pitcher to shutout the Halos. Here are Saturday's starting lineups:

Blue Jays (16-11)

Johnson 2B
Escobar SS
Bautista RF
Encarnacion DH
Lind 1B
Lawrie 3B
Davis LF
Rasmus CF
Arencibia C

Angels (10-17)

Trout CF
Callaspo 3B
Hunter RF
Morales DH
Kendrick 2B
Trumbo 1B
Wells LF
Aybar SS
Wilson C

For all news and information regarding the Los Angeles Angels, please visit Halos Heaven. For updates and perspective regarding the Toronto Blue Jays, head on over to Bluebird Banter.

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Angels Vs. Blue Jays, Game 2 Final Score: Halos Shut Out Again In 4-0 Loss

The Los Angeles Angels have come crashing down to earth after their first season sweep culminated in a Jered Weaver no-hitter on Wednesday night. They've now been shut out on back-to-back nights by the visiting Toronto Blue Jays following a 4-0 loss on Friday night.

Ervin Santana, despite striking out 10 and allowing just three runs over eight innings of work, falls to 0-6 on the season. Henderson Alvarez was more effective for the Blue Jays, improving to 2-2 with a complete game shutout, giving up six hits and one walk.

The top of the third was the killer for the Angels, as the Blue Jays scored on a Yunel Escobar RBI single, followed by a two-run Jose Bautista homer. The Jays tacked on their fourth run with an RBI groundout in the top of the ninth.

Albert Pujols was 0-for-4 and slides below the Mendoza line, now hitting .194 for the season. The Angels will need to win the next two games in order to salvage a series split with Toronto.

Eric Kay notes that this is the first time in team history that the Angels have been involved in four consecutive shutouts. They're 2-2 over those last four games.

For all news and information regarding the Los Angeles Angels, please visit Halos Heaven. For updates and perspective regarding the Toronto Blue Jays, head on over to Bluebird Banter.

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Angels Vs. Blue Jays, Game 1 Final Score: Halos Shut Out In 5-0 Loss

The Los Angeles Angels headed into Thursday night's opener against the Toronto Blue Jays still riding high on Jered Weaver's no-hitter and their first sweep of the season. Unfortunately, it is possible they were experiencing a celebration hangover, as they were almost completely shut down by the Jays in a 5-0 loss.

The Angels managed just three hits in the entire game. Two of those hits were by leadoff batter Mike Trout and the third was a double from Mark Trumbo, the only extra-base hit for the Halos in the game.

J.P. Arencibia's three-run homer in the top of the third inning proved to be the early knockout blow for the Angels, who couldn't solve the dominant Blue Jays starting pitcher.

Toronto starter Brandon Morrow improved to 3-1 with the complete-game shutout, surrendering just the three hits and no walks, while striking out eight. Los Angeles starter Dan Haren surrendered all five runs (three earned) on five hits and two walks in 7.1 innings.

For all news and information regarding the Los Angeles Angels, please visit Halos Heaven. For updates and perspective regarding the Toronto Blue Jays, head on over to Bluebird Banter.

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Angels Acquire Ernesto Frieri From Padres To Bolster Bullpen

After a very poor start to the 2012 season, the Los Angeles Angels have made a move to improve their struggling bullpen. According to an official release from the team, the Angeles acquired 25-year-old reliever Ernesto Frieri in exchange for Minor League infielder Alexi Amarista and RHP Donn Roach.

Frieri, a righty, debuted with the Padres in late 2009 and has pitched very well, posting an ERA of 2.33 in 105 career appearances. With the assistance of pitcher-friendly Petco Park, Frieri had allowed just three earned runs to score this season in 11.2 innings, striking out 18 in the process. Walks are a bit of a concern -- his career average is 4.65 per nine innings -- but those numbers should improve as he continues to develop at the Major League level.

"We are excited to bring Ernesto on board," said Angels GM Jerry Dipoto. "He has proven to be a solid performer during his young career and we look forward to him being an effective part of our bullpen."

As for who the Angels have up, Amarista, 23, made his Major League debut in 2011, batting .154 (8/52) with three doubles, one triple and an RBI in 23 games. The Barcelona, VZ native has played in 18 games at Salt Lake this season, compiling a .273 average (21/77) with six doubles, two triples and 12 RBI. In six professional seasons, Amarista has registered a .313 batting average (599/1915) with 116 doubles, 35 triples, 20 home runs, 117 stolen bases and 239 RBI.

Roach, 22, was drafted by the Angels in the third round of the 2010 draft. In his first six starts this season at Inland Empire, Roach has compiled a 5-0 record with a 2.16 ERA (41.2 IP - 10 ER). The Las Vegas, NV native has compiled a 14-6 career record with two saves and a 3.97 ERA (165.2 IP - 73 ER) in 67 career appearances, 16 starts.

Look for Frieri to make his way to Los Angeles in time for Friday's series opener against the Blue Jays.

For more on the Angels, check out Halos Heaven.

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Angels Vs. Blue Jays Series Preview: Toronto Comes To Town

The Los Angeles Angels are fresh off their first sweep of the season and a Jered Weaver no-hitter. They'll host the formidable Toronto Blue Jays in a four-game series at home.

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