Rapid Reaction: Angels 9, Yankees 8

May, 29, 2012
5/29/12
12:50
AM ET
Recap | Box score | Photos

What it means: That the vacation period of our West Coast trip is definitely over. Despite losing Jered Weaver 12 pitches into the game, the Angels belted the Yankees around all night and finally put them away when Mark Trumbo crushed Cory Wade's 1-1 pitch into the left-field seats leading off the ninth for a walk-off HR.

Weaver down: The Angels ace left the game after stumbling following his second pitch to Robinson Cano. The Angels said he had suffered a lower back injury.

Hughes-ed and abused: Staked to a 3-0 first-inning lead, Phil Hughes gave it back, with interest, at the bottom of the inning, allowing four runs on four hard-hit balls, and two others that nearly went out of the park. Relying solely on his fastball and curve -- and ignoring the changeup that Joe Girardi had said before the game he "needs'' to be effective -- Hughes needed 28 pitches to navigate the inning, and got just one swinging strike. Meanwhile, Albert Pujols, Kendrys Morales, Mark Trumbo and Howie Kendrick all hit rockets, and Maicer Izturis came within a foot of a home run in a nearly disastrous inning. Hughes settled down for a time but came apart for three more in the sixth and wound up allowing seven earned runs in 5 1/3 innings.

Trout fishing: Angels' LF Mike Trout started the first-inning rally with an infield hit, belted a home run in the fourth, and barely missed an extra-base hit when Raul Ibanez ran down his drive in the left-center gap in the sixth. Plus, his spectacular running grab of Eric Chavez's blast saved the Angels a run in the third.

RISP Disaster: With the game tied at 8, the Yankees loaded the bases in the top of the ninth for Derek Jeter, who grounded out weakly on the first pitch he saw to end the inning.

Monkey on their backs: Baseball's greatest mascot, the Rally Monkey, starred in a new Monk in Black feature on the scoreboard in the eighth inning along with his old reliables, Titanic , Jaws, and best of all, Psycho.

A pain in the neck for Angels: After having missed two games with a stiff neck, Russell Martin returned to the lineup and delivered a key hit in the seventh, a two-run double off Jason Isringhausen to tie the game at 8.

Get the license number: Near disaster in right-center as Curtis Granderson and Nick Swisher ran into one another chasing Mark Trumbo's drive into the gap, which went for a triple. Granderson got up quickly and chased the ball but Swisher went down hard. Both stayed in the game, however.

Grandy's dandy: Granderson hit No. 15 into the right-field seats on a 3-2 pitch to (temporarily) tie the game at 4 in the second inning.

Tex still raking: Mark Teixeira had three home runs in his previous four games coming in, and added another tonight, a solo shot in the fifth that cut the Angels' lead to 6-5. It was No. 9 for Tex, who also took over the team lead in RBI (30). He was on base five times tonight, with three walks and a ninth-inning single in addition to the bomb.

Bad break: Yankees had runners on second and third, none out in the sixth when Raul Ibanez sent a shot into the right-center gap. Teixeira broke from first on the crack of the bat, but Robinson Cano, thinking Trumbo might catch the ball, held up between second and third, nearly causing Teixeira to pass him on the bases, and Ibanez's shot went for a long single. The Yankees wound up tying the game anyway on Martin's two-run single.

Throwin' gas: Angels reliever Jordan Walden came out firing in the eighth, blowing a 97 mph heater past Granderson, and 99 mph heater past Alex Rodriguez, and getting Cano to swing late and fly out weakly to left on one clocked at 97 mph.

Ay-vey!: Erick Aybar booted what should have been a double-play grounder off the bat of Alex Rodriguez in the first inning, leading to three unearned Yankee runs. Aybar also airmailed his throw on Jeter's fourth-inning grounder, pulling Pujols off the bag, but Pujols got the error when he couldn't come down with the ball.
Wallace Matthews has covered New York sports since 1983 as a reporter, columnist, radio host and TV commentator. He covers the Yankees for ESPNNewYork.com after working for Newsday, the New York Post, the New York Sun and ESPN New York 98.7 FM.
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TEAM LEADERS

BA LEADER
Jacoby Ellsbury
BA HR RBI R
.285 13 61 63
OTHER LEADERS
HRM. Teixeira 20
RBIJ. Ellsbury 61
RB. Gardner 78
OPSB. Gardner .779
WM. Tanaka 12
ERAH. Kuroda 3.94
SOM. Tanaka 135