Morales’ HR lifts Angels to 14-13 win over Red Sox

Posted Aug. 24, 2012, at 11:54 a.m.

BOSTON — Kendrys Morales led off Los Angeles’ two-run 10th inning with a solo homer, and the Angels completed a three-game sweep of Boston by outlasting the Red Sox 14-13 on Thursday night.

The Red Sox wasted a 6-0 lead then rallied from deficits of 8-7 in the sixth and 12-11 in the ninth. But closer Alfredo Aceves struggled after Boston was one out away from victory in the ninth. Aceves (2-8) gave up five runs and six hits in one inning, and the Red Sox lost for the 11th time in 15 games.

Ernesto Frieri (2-0) got the win after giving up a tying solo homer in the ninth to Cody Ross, his 19th of the season, and an RBI single in the 10th to Dustin Pedroia, who drove in five runs.

Frieri was charged with a blown save, but secured the win when he struck out Adrian Gonzalez to end the 4-hour, 34-minute game.

With the score tied at 12, Morales jumped on an 0-1 pitch from Aceves for his 16th homer — just over the low right field fence. Erick Aybar followed with a single, knocking out Aceves. Vernon Wells hit an RBI double off Craig Breslow for the final run.

The Angels, who were swept in four games by Tampa Bay before coming to Boston, remained five games behind the Rays and closed to within 3 1-2 of Baltimore in the race for the AL’s two wild-card spots.

The Red Sox took an 11-9 lead in the eighth on RBI singles by Jacoby Ellsbury and Pedroia, but the Angels rallied in the ninth and regained the lead with Wells’ eighth homer and two-out, run-scoring singles by Torii Hunter and Mark Trumbo.

Angels starter C.J. Wilson, 0-5 in his last 11 starts, struggled again.

The Red Sox took a 1-0 lead in the first on a double by Pedroia and an RBI single by Gonzalez. They made it 6-0 in the second on run-scoring singles by Scott Podsednik and Ellsbury and Pedroia’s 11th homer, a three-run shot.

But Franklin Morales couldn’t hold the lead, giving up six of the Angels’ eight third-inning runs. Los Angeles had six hits, three walks and an error in the inning. Chris Iannetta and Hunter had two hits each, and every member of the Angels lineup except Trumbo got on base in the inning.

Two runs scored on bases-loaded walks to Kendrys Morales and Wells. Seven consecutive batters reached base after two were out.

Wilson then settled down and retired eight straight batters before Pedroia reached on an error by third baseman Alberto Callaspo in the fifth and scored on a single by Ross.

Boston went ahead 9-8 with two runs in the sixth on Mike Aviles’ 12th homer and consecutive doubles by Pedro Ciriaco and Ellsbury. But Los Angeles tied it in the seventh on Trout’s RBI single.

Notes: The last Angels pitcher to go 11 starts without a win was Jim Abbott, whose streak reached 13 games from May 7 to Aug, 10, 1996. … Angels first baseman Albert Pujols missed the game with tightness in his right calf. … Jon Lester (7-10) pitches for the Red Sox on Friday against Bruce Chen (9-10) in the opener of a four-game series with the Kansas City Royals. … The Angels return home for a three-game series against the Detroit Tigers with Zack Greinke (1-2) going for Los Angeles against Rick Porcello (9-8).

RAYS 5, ATHLETICS 0

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Alex Cobb pitched a four-hitter for his first major league shutout and the surging Tampa Bay Rays beat the Oakland Athletics 5-0 on Thursday night to pull within 2½ games of the first-place New York Yankees in the AL East.

Matt Joyce hit a two-run double in a five-run fifth inning against Tyson Ross, hastily called up from the minors to pitch in place of suspended Oakland starter Bartolo Colon.

Cobb (8-8) struck out eight and walked two in his second career complete game, both this season. He bounced back from a poor outing against the Los Angeles Angels to win for the fourth time in five starts.

It was the 14th win in 17 games for the Rays and their seventh shutout since July 19. They have pitched 13 shutouts in all this season, second-most in the majors behind the Angels (15).

Cobb threw a called third strike past Yoenis Cespedes for the final out. As the Rays poured onto the field for handshakes, a group of starting pitchers jumped together and bumped shoulders in excitement.

Matt Moore banged into Cobb and sent him tumbling onto the mound, minus his cap. Still clutching the ball in his glove, Cobb climbed back to his feet and smiled.

It’s the closest the Rays have been to first place since they were 2½ games out before games of June 16.

Oakland dropped into a tie with Baltimore and Detroit for the AL’s second wild-card spot, 2½ games behind the Rays. The teams finish their three-game series Saturday and get a rare Sunday off because the Republican National Convention begins Monday in Tampa.

The A’s did not have a travel day after beating Minnesota at home on Wednesday afternoon.

Luke Scott also doubled for the Rays in the fifth against Ross (2-9), called up from Triple-A Sacramento when Colon received a 50-game suspension Wednesday for testing positive for testosterone. The Rays batted around in the big inning, which also included RBI singles by Sam Fuld and Evan Longoria.

Ryan Roberts broke the scoreless tie with a sacrifice fly.

Ross, making his first start for the A’s since June 28, pitched six-plus innings. He gave up nine hits while striking out six.

TIGERS 3, BLUE JAYS 2

DETROIT — Alex Avila’s RBI single with two outs in the 11th gave Detroit a victory over Toronto, one inning after center fielder Austin Jackson kept the game tied with a spectacular catch.

With two runners on, Avila singled to right off Chad Jenkins (0-1).

Joaquin Benoit (3-3) got the win. Justin Verlander struck out 12 in nine innings for the Tigers.

Detroit slugger Miguel Cabrera left in the second because of a sore right ankle and is day to day. The Tigers pulled within 1½ games of the first-place Chicago White Sox in the AL Central.

J.A. Happ took a shutout into the eighth inning for Toronto, but the bullpen couldn’t hold a 2-0 lead. Edwin Encarnacion hit a two-run homer off Verlander.

RANGERS 10, TWINS 6

ARLINGTON, Texas — Josh Hamilton had five RBIs and Mitch Moreland doubled in the go-ahead run during a six-run eighth inning that carried the Texas Rangers over the Minnesota Twins.

Adrian Beltre had three hits, including his fourth homer in two days, and scored the tiebreaking run on Moreland’s drive to left-center.

A pair of Twins errors led to five unearned runs in the eighth as the AL West leaders sent 11 batters to the plate to break a 4-all tie. Geovany Soto, Ian Kinsler and Elvis Andrus also had RBIs in the inning.

Moreland entered in the sixth to replace designated hitter Michael Young, who left to witness the birth of his third son.

PHILLIES 4, REDS 3

PHILADELPHIA — John Mayberry Jr. hit an RBI single in the bottom of the 11th inning to lift the Philadelphia Phillies to a 4-3 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday night.

Todd Frazier drove in all three runs for the NL Central-leading Reds, who were seeking their first series win in Philadelphia since 2006.

The Phillies tied it in the eighth on Jimmy Rollins’ sacrifice fly and won it on Mayberry’s hit to split the four-game set and take over sole possession of third place in the NL East for the first time since April.

CARDINALS 13, ASTROS 5

ST. LOUIS — David Freese’s three-run homer snapped the Cardinals’ seven-game long-ball drought and St. Louis beat the Houston Astros to complete a three-game sweep.

Freese and Matt Holliday each had four RBIs and Allen Craig had three hits and three RBIs. The Cardinals shrugged aside a 4-0, fourth-inning deficit and sent Houston to its seventh straight loss.

The Astros are 0-4 while getting outscored 32-8 since interim manager Tony DeFrancesco replaced Brad Mills as leader of the stripped-down roster. Houston has won just seven of its last 50 overall.

ROCKIES 1, METS 0

NEW YORK — Collin McHugh pitched two-hit ball over seven scoreless innings for the Mets in his major league debut, but the Colorado Rockies completed their second straight four-game sweep of New York as Jordany Valdespin misplayed Tyler Colvin’s leadoff drive in the eighth into a game-changing triple.

Colorado tied a season high with its fifth straight win and completed its second four-game sweep in two years at Citi Field.

McHugh, a 25-year-old right-hander, pitched masterfully with nine strikeouts and one walk. But after he left, the Rockies broke through quickly off Bobby Parnell (2-3).

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