Nightmare Series for Angels Finally Over

Shohei Ohtani

What might be the most painful 72 hours of the Angels’ history has finally ended as the Angels were swept by the Padres and lost three pivotal players to injury during their disastrous trip to San Diego.

Mike Trout went down with a broken left hamate bone late in game one and is expected to miss 4-8 weeks. Trout had surgery to repair his hamate bone on Wednesday. Then in game two, Anthony Rendon fouled a ball off his shin and exited the game. X-rays came back negative, so it is a contusion, and the Angels have yet to announce how long he will miss. The hope is that Rendon will be available for the start of the series against the Dodgers on July 7th. Shohei Ohtani left the game an hour later with a blister on his right middle finger. The blister did not limit Ohtani’s ability to hit as he was the starting DH in the series finale but is not expected to pitch until after the All-Star break.

Now to the games themselves, game one of the series embodied what the Angels have been struggling with all season long, situational hitting. The Angels lost 10-3 despite outhitting the Padres 14-12 and left 14 men on base by going 4 for 16 with runners in scoring position. Their .244 RISP ranks 24th in baseball this year and have left the fourth most runners on base in baseball at 621 LOB.

Five Halo hitters had at least a pair of hits in game one, including Luis Rengifo, who went 3 for 4 with a solo home run.

On the bump, Jaime Barria did not have his best stuff and gave up four earned runs in five innings of work and raised his ERA to 3.31 on the year. Barria did a good job throwing strikes as he had no walks but gave up some hard contact, including a home run by Xander Bogaerts. Rookie pitcher Victor Mederos made his second career appearance in relief and only faced four batters but gave up two earned runs without recording an out. Tucker Davidson and Sam Bachman would come in, and both had some difficulty finding the zone, and each gave up two earned runs in 1.1 and 1.2 innings pitched.

Ohtani took the mound in game two and struggled with his command again. In five innings pitched, Ohtani gave up five earned runs on seven hits while striking out five and walking four before being taken out in the 6th inning due to his blister. His ERA is now 3.32 heading to the All-Star break. Aaron Loup got through the 6th inning without any damage, and then Gerardo Reyes gave up two earned in the 7th, and Chris Devenski gave up one earned run in the 8th.

It was an 8-1 Padres lead at the start of the 9th inning, with Hunter Renfroe’s solo shot in the 5th being the only run for the Angels. Jose Castillo came in to shut the door for the Padres, but Taylor Ward led off the inning with a single, and then Jo Adell tripled him in. Eduardo Escobar hit a sacrifice fly to score Adell, making it 8-3 with one out. Castillo would then hit Mike Moustakas with a pitch and walk the next three batters he faced to give the Angels another run.

Padres manager Bob Melvin had seen enough and brought in All-Star closer Josh Hader, who would walk in another run but ultimately ended the game, and the Halos lost 8-5.

The series finale was a much more competitive affair. If someone gave up a run, they responded by scoring a run the next inning until the 8th inning. Padres scored a run in the bottom of the 1st, and the Angels scored in the top of the 2nd. Angels scored a run in the top of the 3rd, and the Padres scored in the bottom half of the inning. Padres scored in the bottom of the 6th, and Matt Thaiss homers in the 7th to tie the game. Padres would regain the lead again in the bottom of the 7th with an RBI groundout by Xander Bogaerts. The finishing touches were put on in the 8th when Chris Devenski walked in a run, and the Angels lost 5-3 to complete the sweep.

Patrick Sandoval started for the Angels, and although the one earned run in five innings pitched looks good, Sandoval had to labor throughout this start, especially early. Sandoval walked four and only threw 48 strikes in 85 pitches (56% strikes). He ends his first half of the season with a 4.41 ERA.

The Angels wrap up the first half of the season before heading to the All-Star break with a two-game series at Chavez Ravine against the Dodgers. The pitching matchups will be Griffin Canning against Tony Gonsolin in game one, and Reid Detmers will take the bump in game two while the Dodgers have yet to announce their starter.

The Angels have lost seven of their last ten games and 13 of their last 20 and are now 45-44 and sit four games out of a Wild Card spot.

Jack Janes

Journalism major at the University of La Verne. Played college baseball at Fullerton College and the University of La Verne. Also write for Inside The Rink.

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