Pujols hits 1st home run of spring, Angels beat Giants 9-5
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) Albert Pujols hit his first home run of the spring and the Los Angeles Angels rallied for a 9-5 victory over the split-squad San Francisco Giants on Saturday.
Pujols connected for a two-run homer off right-hander Jake Peavy in the first inning.
Mac Wiliamson, making a bid for a reserve outfield role, hit a two-run homer to give the Giants a 5-3 lead in the fifth. The Angels cut it to 5-4 with a run in the fifth and scored three in the sixth. Todd Cunningham put Los Angeles over the top with a pinch-hit two-run single.
Peavy, making his third start of the spring, gave up three runs on five hits in the first two innings but pitched two hitless innings after that.
He came back to get Pujols on a called third strike in the third. Facing left-handed reliever Ricky Romero in the fifth after Peavy exited, Pujols sent a drive deep to left-center, where Gregor Blanco caught the ball just in front of the fence on the warning track.
Angels manager Mike Scioscia said Pujols actually hit the ball harder on the flyout than the home run, which came on a soft liner.
''Albert also hit the ball well the other day, too, and it's good to see him swinging the bat,'' Scioscia said.
Giants: Peavy said the home run by Pujols ''came on a slider that I didn't finish.''
The 34-year-old Peavy said his previous springs in the Cactus League with the Padres, White Sox and Giants ''were awful. I don't know what it is.
''Except for that one pitch to Pujols, I felt good. I felt that I made progress and I am moving forward.''
Peavy finished with 59 pitches. He was 8-6 in 19 starts for the Giants in 2015 and has a career record of 147-117.
Angels: Left-hander Hector Santiago, making his third start of the spring and second against the Giants, had mixed results in 2 2/3 innings. He gave up three runs (only one earned) on four hits, walked two and struck out four. He had two scoreless innings against the Giants on March 2 in Scottsdale.
Scioscia said Santiago, who was 9-9 in 2015, had a goal of throwing 60 pitches in four innings and threw 66 on Saturday.
''His whole game revolves around his fastball, but he has a good changeup and slider,'' Scioscia said.
Giants: After hitting a run-scoring triple in the first inning, designated hitter Brandon Crawford, the regular shortstop, was stung in the hand by a pitch from Santiago. Crawford shook the hand briefly while heading to first base but didn't appear worse for wear. He is hitting just .188.
Angels: Right-hander Jered Weaver will see a spine specialist on Monday after being diagnosed with ''mild degenerative changes in his cervical spine.''
The 33-year-old Weaver has lost velocity on his fastball but thus far has continued to throw on the side.
Giants: Left-hander Madison Bumgarner, the opening-day starter, will make his third spring start on Sunday against the visiting San Diego Padres.
Angels: Right-hander Matt Shoemaker makes his second start and third appearance overall against the Texas Rangers in Tempe. Shoemaker was 7-10 in 24 starts in 2015.