Angels hit four homers in 6-2 win over Royals

The Angels' lineup looks as potent as hoped. Albert Pujols, Josh Hamilton, Mike Trout and Howie Kendrick hit solo homers.

May 14, 2013|By Bill Shaikin
  • Angels' J.B. Schuck makes a diving catch in the fourth inning against the Kansas City Royals.
Angels' J.B. Schuck makes a diving catch in the fourth inning against… (Lisa Blumenfeld / Getty…)

There are issues in the starting rotation, in the bullpen, on the bench. For the Angels, those are minor issues.

These Angels are built to outslug the opposition. If they don't hit, the rest doesn't matter.

Those Angels showed up on Tuesday. For the first time this season, Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton hit home runs in the same game.

BOX SCORE: Angels 6, Kansas City 2

"If those two guys get going, that's a lot of damage that can be done," second baseman Howie Kendrick said.

Kendrick and Mike Trout each hit a home run too, in a 6-2 victory over the Kansas City Royals.

"There's more that we can do than sit around and hit home runs," Manager Mike Scioscia said, "but we need some of that power to materialize in our lineup."

The Angels, for all the wealth in their lineup, rank 11th in the American League in runs scored, sixth in home runs.

"It's good to create a little fuel for the fire, up and down the lineup," Hamilton said. "It's a good thing to see guys smiling and having fun."

Jason Vargas and three relievers combined on a six-hitter, with Vargas holding the Royals to two runs and five hits over seven innings. For the fourth time in five starts, Vargas pitched at least seven innings.

Dane De La Rosa got three outs, Scott Downs two and Ernesto Frieri one.

For a night, anyway, this was the way it was supposed to be for the home team.

"The way it's supposed to be? This is the way we like it to be," Kendrick said. "We're winning games. We haven't done a lot of that lately. Any way we win, it feels good."

Trout has seven home runs. Kendrick has six, all to center field.

But this evening was more about the $375 million in headliners, Pujols and Hamilton. After all, ESPN took great pains on Sunday's nationally televised Angels game to tell America how well the teams that formerly employed Pujols and Hamilton have done without them.

Pujols has six home runs, tied with Lyle Overbay and Ryan Howard for seventh among major league first basemen. Pujols, playing despite a sore left foot and right knee, hit his first home run in 37 at-bats.

"The lower half has been banged up," Scioscia said before the game. "It's tough to leverage a baseball like that."

Hamilton has five home runs, a .216 batting average and a .634 OPS. On the same date last year, he had 18 home runs, a .400 average and a 1.310 OPS.

He was limited to designated hitter Tuesday because of sinus congestion, for which he has changed his medication. Hamilton said he would prefer to remain at DH Wednesday, and Scioscia said he did not anticipate any objection.

Hamilton said he had studied video from the 2010 season, when he started relatively slowly and exploded in late May and June. He made an adjustment during batting practice and carried it into the game, not only with his first home run in five days but his first walk in five days.

"I like the home run better," Scioscia said.

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