The Los Angeles Angels had big plans for their four-game series against the first-place Texas Rangers. For the first two games of the series, it appeared as though those plans would come to fruition. However, after a pair of nightmare slugfests that once again exposed the thin bullpen, the Angels were forced to stand pat, splitting the four-game series and neither losing nor gaining ground on the Rangers in the American League West. On Thursday, the Angels eventually dropped an offense-fueled affair by a final score of 15-9.
In the top of the first inning, a sacrifice fly from Albert Pujols and the 28th home run of the year from Mark Trumbo staked the Angels to a quick 2-0 lead. Ian Kinsler answered back with a solo home run in the bottom of the first to cut the Halos' lead in half.
The Rangers hung a five-spot on their former pitcher C.J. Wilson in the bottom of the second inning, thanks to RBI singles from Kinsler, Josh Hamilton and Michael Young to put Texas ahead, 6-2. Pujols hit an RBI double in the top of the third to get one of those runs back. In the fourth, a Kendrys Morales homer and RBI groundout from Bobby Wilson brought the Angels to within a run. An RBI single from Torii Hunter drove in two runs and put Los Angeles back on top, 7-6.
Nelson Cruz belted a home run in the bottom of the fourth to tie things up again. In the top of the fifth, Morales hit a big RBI double to put the Halos on top, 8-7. It would be the last time the Angels would lead in the game and it would only last until the bottom of the sixth, when Elvis Andrus doubled home Kinsler to tie things up.
The bottom of the seventh proved to be the back-breaker as the Rangers once again got to the Angels bullpen. Mitch Moreland singled on a bloop to drive in the go-ahead run. Andrus and Hamilton followed up with RBI hits to drive in three more and make it 12-8 Texas.
The Rangers kept going in the eighth, with Geovany Soto and David Murphy picking up RBI hits and making it 15-8. Alberto Callaspo hit a two-out home run in the top of the ninth. Howie Kendrick singled off of Joe Nathan and Chris Iannetta followed that up with a walk and a wild pitch advanced the runners to second and third. Unfortunately, Maicer Izturis struck out on a 3-2 pitch to end the game.
Wilson make it just 5.1 innings, striking out seven but giving up eight earned runs on 10 hits and three walks as his 10th win once again eluded him.
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