Shoemaker, Angels ground Orioles 6-1 for 5th straight win
BALTIMORE (AP) Matt Shoemaker hopes his latest outing is the spark his team needs to begin another march toward the postseason.
Shoemaker scattered three hits and allowed one run over seven innings, leading the Los Angeles Angels to a season-high five-game winning streak with a 6-1 victory over the Baltimore Orioles on Saturday night.
''Hopefully we've reached a point where we are on a roll through the rest of the season and into the playoffs and World Series. Optimistically speaking, those are our team goals,'' said Shoemaker, who had not won since April 13. ''I felt like I was almost casual the last few starts, not in my attack aggressive mode, (not) making quality pitches. That's where I was tonight. I need to have that bulldog mentality that I usually have.''
Mike Trout and David Freese homered for the Angels, who will try for their first three-game sweep of the season Sunday. Trout finished with three hits and two RBIs in the game, which was delayed at the start for 57 minutes because of rain.
The Orioles have lost eight of their past 11 games.
Shoemaker (3-3) won his seventh consecutive game on the road. He had seven strikeouts and no walks.
''He kept them off balance all night and pitched a good game with no support to the seventh inning and even then it's only a 2-1 lead when he's pitched through the bottom of the seventh,'' Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.
Baltimore's Ubaldo Jimenez (3-3) lost for the first time in four starts at Camden Yards this season. He allowed two runs and seven hits with six strikeouts and no walks over seven innings. He also fell to 0-5 in as many starts against the Angels.
Steve Pearce hit his third homer for the Orioles, his first since the second game of the season - a span of 70 at-bats.
"We're just not getting the timely hits right now,'' Pearce said. ''We've been hitting. We just have not been scoring runs. It's one of those things that's happened to be going against us all year.''
Shoemaker then retired 10 in a row to keep his team in the game. The Angels took the lead in the seventh when Erick Aybar and Johnny Giavotella led off with a pair of infield singles, and scored on another pair of singles by Chris Iannetta and Marc Krauss.
''It's one of those crazy moments in the game,'' Jimenez said. ''There's nothing you can do about it. I made some good pitches and then they got three infield hits. What else can you do?''
Trout provided an insurance run with a leadoff homer in the eighth off Darren O'Day. It was Trout's 10th homer and fourth in the past nine games. Freese's homer, a wild pitch and infield hit by Trout added three more runs in the ninth for Los Angeles.
Fernando Salas pitched a scoreless ninth for the Angels.
''Our pitching staff has been great,'' Iannetta said. ''It has really been picking up our offense.''
The Grunbaum family - Robin, Robert and sons Alex and Scott - are Angels season ticket holders from Irvine, California, and were visiting Camden Yards for the first time. It was the 34th and final stadium to finish their 18-year quest to see a game at every active big league park, including the old and new Yankees Stadium.
Angels: There were no injury updates.
Orioles: 2B Jonathan Schoop (sprained right knee) hit off a tee and threw from 90 feet Saturday in Sarasota, Florida. He will take grounders Monday.
Angels: Garrett Richards (3-1) carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning of his last outing against Houston. However, he is 0-2 with a 7.31 ERA in six starts against the Orioles.
Orioles: Mike Wright, who was called up from Triple-A Norfolk on Wednesday, will make his major league debut.