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Jered Weaver pitches complete game as Angels beat Orioles, 6-3

The right-hander is perfect through four innings as Angels win second straight. Seven Angels players combine for the team's 10 hits.

April 21, 2012|By Baxter Holmes

Far down — and maybe even hidden — on the growing list of grumbles Angels fans have tallied up about their team's underachieving start was the fact that the club hadn't even won back-to-back games.

As of Saturday night, when the Angels beat the Baltimore Orioles, 6-3, at Angel Stadium, that nitpick can be penciled off.

One small step for the 6-9 Angels, one sigh of relief for those who root for them.

Of course, it never hurts to have an ace on the mound when trying for a milestone such as consecutive wins.

Right-hander Jered Weaver improved to 3-0 (2.54 earned-run average) with a complete game, the ninth of his career and first since July 7, 2011, against Seattle.

He struck out five, gave up five hits and was tagged for three runs. He threw 114 pitches.

"If I didn't finish it off, I knew the bullpen back there would finish it off for me," Weaver said.

Weaver was perfect through four innings until he gave up a single to Adam Jones in the fifth.

Then, Weaver fell behind, 3-0, in the count against Orioles catcher Matt Wieters.

The next pitch was a fastball, and Wieters smacked it into the right-field seats, giving Baltimore a 2-0 lead.

But that lead didn't even last into the next inning.

In the bottom of the fifth, the Angels' offense racked up five runs, tying a season high for runs scored in an inning.

To start the deluge, Torii Hunter singled, took second base on a throwing error, third on a wild pitch and scored on a Mark Trumbo single.

After a walk, a strikeout and a walk, Erick Aybar singled in a run.

Then Bobby Abreu singled in two more. Kendrys Morales singled in another for good measure.

With that, Baltimore pitcher Jake Arrieta (1-1) was given the rest of the night off.

The right-hander pitched 4 1/3 innings and gave up six hits and five runs for the Orioles (8-7).

The Angels left eight on base, but enough crossed home plate for it not to make a difference. Trumbo made his fourth start at third base for the Angels, but he was replaced in the sixth by Alberto Callaspo.

Seven Angels players combined for the team's 10 hits. Aybar, Morales and Chris Iannetta each had two hits.

"We know what this offense is capable of and they showed it tonight," Weaver said.

As for the $240-million investment the Angels made this off-season, well, Albert Pujols is still without a homer.

He came close in the seventh, roping a shot toward the left-field corner. Angels fans in attendance let out a collective groan when that hit curved foul.

Pujols finished 0-for-3 with a run scored and a walk.

Next item on the agenda for the Angels: a sweep.

That could be done Sunday if the Angels complete the three-game sweep of the Orioles, which would be a fine way to wrap up a seven-game homestand before hitting the road for six games.

"I can feel it coming," Hunter said on the team improving. "We're having better at-bats, we're balanced. It's coming."

baxter.holmes@latimes.com

twitter.com/baxterholmes

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