A's 4, Angels 3 (Game Two): Three Up, Three Down

July, 16, 2011
7/16/11
8:44
PM PT
After the Angels and Oakland A's spent all day playing baseball Saturday, not much was settled.

The Angels lost the second game of their first scheduled doubleheader in 33 years, 4-3 on Scott Sizemore's 10th-inning RBI single.

The Good:

Power. The Angels have two of the hottest power hitters going right now in Vernon Wells and Mark Trumbo. Wells mashed his 14th home run to tie the score in the sixth inning and Trumbo hit a two-run shot in the second (his 18th) to stake the Angels to a 2-0 lead. Aside from that, there wasn't any offense to speak of.

Bullpen help. We could have put this one in either category, good or bad. Fernando Rodney wasn't particularly effective pitching in a minor-league game (two hits, a walk and two runs in an inning), but the Angels didn't report any physical setbacks. He should be back in fairly short order, which could help stabilize the middle innings, but shouldn't provide much help to the back end.

Santana's stuff. Ervin Santana has made a pretty good career out of dominating the Oakland A's. He entered Saturday with a 13-3 career record against one of the Angels' main rivals. He was pretty good Saturday, too, giving up only a couple of earned runs through 6 1/3 innings. He did, however, blow the early lead, though -- as usual -- Angels pitchers had little margin for error.

The Bad:

Action. Oakland starter Rich Harden, who tends to get hurt about every other month, looked surprisingly effective lowering his ERA to 5.00. The Angels managed only five hits in the game. Two of them were home runs, so they made it competitive, but it was another lackluster offensive performance. That's three straight to open the second half.

Upper third. The first three hitters in the Angels' lineup went a combined 0-for-13. Not only didn't they set the table, they yanked it out from under the rest of the offense.

Pressure. Reliever Rich Thompson seems to put up marvelous numbers when he's pitching with a four-run lead or mopping up when the Angels are getting blown out. He has struggled in higher-leverage situations, including the 10th inning of a tied game Saturday. Walking the leadoff guy rarely turns out well in these types of situations.

Mark Saxon

ESPNLosAngeles.com
Mark Saxon is a staff writer for ESPNLosAngeles.com. He spent six years at the Orange County Register, and began his career at the Oakland Tribune, where he started an 11-year journey covering Major League Baseball. He has also covered colleges, including USC football and UCLA basketball.

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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Howie Kendrick
BA HR RBI R
.293 7 75 85
OTHER LEADERS
HRM. Trout 36
RBIM. Trout 111
RM. Trout 115
OPSM. Trout .939
WJ. Weaver 18
ERAG. Richards 2.61
SOJ. Weaver 169