Trout has grand slam, solo HR in Angels' win over Rangers
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) Home run titles are no different to Mike Trout than any of the other awards and achievements that have made him a major league star. If it happens, it happens. It's just not on his personal agenda at the moment.
Trout had a grand slam and a solo shot among his season-high four hits Sunday, powering the Angels to a 13-7 victory over the Texas Rangers and raising his major league-leading home run total to 31.
''I don't look at that stuff,'' Trout said. ''At the end of the year, if that's where it's at, then that's where it's at. I'm just trying to do whatever I can to help the team win.''
C.J. Cron also went deep and rookie Andrew Heaney kept his unblemished record intact, helping the Angels end a three-game skid and regain sole possession of the AL West lead by a game over the Houston Astros - whom they play in a three-game series beginning Tuesday night at Minute Maid Park.
Heaney (5-0) allowed two runs and six hits over six innings in his sixth start for the Angels.
The 24-year-old left-hander has thrown at least six innings and allowed fewer than three runs in all of his outings this season. The only pitcher in club history to do that in each of his first seven starts was Jered Weaver in 2006.
Nick Martinez (5-6) was charged with four runs and six hits in five-plus innings. The right-hander is 0-4 with a 7.01 ERA over his last six starts for the Rangers.
Trout drove an 0-2 pitch just above the yellow line atop the 18-foot wall in right field in the first inning, becoming the fastest player in Angels history to reach the 30-homer mark in a season. The reigning AL MVP did it in his 97th game, breaking the previous mark set 15 years ago by Troy Glaus (100 games).
Trout then capped a five-run sixth with his third career slam on a full-count pitch from Spencer Patton, increasing the Angels' lead to 8-2 and getting a curtain call from the crowd of 38,539.
''I thought Patton made some good pitches early in the count. But once he got into the full count, he had to come into the plate and a premiere hitter made him pay,'' Rangers manager Jeff Banister said.
The Angels got a scare in the fourth inning when Trout came up holding his left wrist in pain after diving for a Texas Leaguer by Elvis Andrus that popped out of his glove for a single after he hit the ground.
''When my glove started to tuck, my first instinct was to try and get my hand out of the glove. I think if my hand would have stayed in the glove, it obviously would have been more severe,'' said Trout, who had a bag of ice taped to his wrist in the clubhouse.
''It's still a little sore, but it's fine,'' he added.
Prince Fielder, who was hit by a pitch to open the fourth inning, advanced to second on Andrus' hit before a two-out walk to Ryan Rua loaded the bases. Heaney, who hadn't hit a batter 34 1-3 innings over his five previous starts this season, plunked No. 9 hitter Tomas Telis on the foot to force in a run that put the Rangers ahead 2-1.
The next batter was Delino DeShields, who lifted a pop fly into short left field. Shortstop Erick Aybar made an over-the-shoulder catch for the third out, a split second before he went head-over-heels in a violent collision with Matt Joyce - who hit the deck in an effort to avoid him.
''I was going to dive there at the end - and when I peaked down, I saw Erick and tried to just get out of the way and try to defend myself,'' Joyce said. ''Fortunately, he ended up catching the ball, but I took a pretty good knock on the chin from his knee.''
Both made it back to the dugout on their own power after spending several anxious minutes on the ground.
''They said I was out for a good couple of seconds there,'' Joyce said. ''I was definitely dizzy right afterwards, and I really don't remember walking off the field. They said it was a mild concussion, so I'm going to see the doctor tomorrow and see where we stand.''
Cron's leadoff homer in the Angels' fourth tied it 2-all.
Pujols got his 100th career stolen base. That made him the fourth player in major league history with at least 100 steals, 500 home runs and a .300 career batting average. The others were Babe Ruth, Willie Mays and Hank Aaron.
Rangers: LHP Matt Harrison (1-1) will take the ball in the opener of a three-game home series against the Yankees on Monday night, after scattering seven hits through six innings in a 9-0 win at Colorado last Tuesday. It will be only the third start this season and ninth over the past three years for the injury-plagued eight-year veteran.
Angels: LHP C.J. Wilson (8-7) will start the series opener against the Astros. He is 7-5 with a 2.99 in 15 starts when he's pitched at least six innings, but has a 7.30 ERA in the five outings in which he hasn't.