ANAHEIM -- Pitcher Jerome Williams, making his first start in the majors since 2007, struck out six in seven innings to lead the Angels to a 7-1 victory against the Baltimore Orioles on Sunday afternoon. Williams earned his first major league win since 2005, helping the Angels creep to within four games of the Texas Rangers in the American League West race.
Seven strong. There were no signs of nerves for Williams, who appeared to embrace the moment he has craved for a long time. The lone mistake came in the seventh when Matt Wieters deposited a fastball into the right-field seats. And when it was evident that his afternoon was done, Williams walked off the mound to a standing ovation, took off his cap before reaching the dugout, and pointed to the sky.
Three, six, one. The unconventional double play came when Williams needed it most. With the bases loaded and one out in the fourth, Wieters bounced to first baseman Mark Trumbo, who relayed a throw to shortstop Erick Aybar for an out. Aybar fired back to Williams, who alertly covered first, and the Angels were out of the jam.
Sunshine. The Angels' third run was a product of some good luck ... and bad glove work. Baltimore left fielder Felix Pie lost a two-out popup in the sun, allowing Vernon Wells to scamper into second base. Wells, testing his luck even further, took off for third on the very next pitch and scored when Craig Tatum's throw wound up in left field.
Middle guys. The heart of the Angels' batting order had a rather forgettable afternoon. No. 4 hitter Torii Hunter and No. 5 hitter Trumbo combined to go 1-for-9 at the plate. Wells, sixth in the order, would have gone hitless in four at-bats if not for a sun-aided double to left in the third.
Imitation. All Hunter could do was stop, put his hands on his hips and smile after Orioles center fielder Adam Jones robbed him of a fourth-inning home run. In essence, Jones did what Hunter has done to many. Hunter, obviously impressed, waited for Jones near second base and greeted him with a smile.
The week. At this point, the Angels have no one but themselves to blame. They dug a seven-game hole by losing three of four to the Rangers earlier in the week. That, combined with the three-game sweep of the Orioles, made for a bittersweet week.