The Los Angeles Angels were hoping for a sweep of the Boston Red Sox on Thursday night at Fenway Park. It took prolonged bullpen meltdowns by both teams, numerous lead changes and extra innings, but the Halos finally completed the sweep with a 14-13 win.
Adrian Gonzalez hit an RBI single in the first inning to get the Red Sox on the board early. Boston followed up with a big five-run second inning off of starter C.J. Wilson. Scott Podsednik and Jacoby Ellsbury hit RBI singles before Dustin Pedroia homered. Suddenly it was 6-0 Red Sox, but the Angels were about to answer back in a big way.
The Halos plated eight runs in a wild third inning, knocking starter Franklin Morales out of the game. The Angels scored on a one-out single by Howie Kendrick, followed by a two-out, bases-loaded walk to Kendrys Morales. Then came a fielding error that allowed Kendrick to score, cutting the Boston lead to 6-3. Vernon Wells drew another bases-loaded walk, followed by an RBI single from Chris Iannetta that tied the game and an RBI single from Mike Trout that put Los Angeles on top. Torii Hunter added one last RBI single to make it 8-6, putting Wilson in line for the win. An astounding seven of the Angels' eight runs came with two outs in the inning.
The Red Sox would not go quietly, however, as the bullpen's tale of woes continued. Cody Ross hit an RBI single in the fifth inning to bring the Sox to within a run and Mike Aviles hit a solo home run over the Green Monster in the sixth inning to tie things up, 8-8. Ellsbury added a two-out RBI double later in the sixth to put Boston back on top, 9-8.
In the top of the seventh inning, Trout was once again able to be the hero, smacking a clutch two-out, two-strike RBI single up the middle to tie things back up, 9-9.
The bottom of the eighth inning looked like it would be curtains for the Angels. With two outs, both Ellsbury and Pedroia hit RBI singles to put Boston on top, 11-9.
The Angels battled back once again in the top of the ninth. Wells hit a solo home run to bring the Halos within one and Trout was able to single and get himself into scoring position. With two outs, Hunter drove in Trout with a single to tie things up, 11-11. The Halos capped off yet another two-out rally with an RBI single from Mark Trumbo that gave the Angels the lead, 12-11.
In the bottom of the ninth, the Ernesto Frieri magic faltered as Cody Ross dumped his 19th home run of the year into the seats of the Monster to tie the game for the fifth time. The Angels weren't quite finished in this ridiculous game, as Kendrys Morales led off the 10th inning with a solo home run to right field to give the Halos a 13-12 lead. Wells followed up with a big RBI double for an insurance run.
That extra run ended up being of utmost importance, as Pedroia was able to drive in one last Boston run with two outs in the bottom of the 10th. Frieri managed to strike out Gonzalez to finally, mercifully end the game.
Although the Halos picked up a crucial sweep, one wonders how much this last win has sapped their already-thin bullpen heading into the weekend.
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