As the saying goes, “Chicks Dig the Long Ball.”
Plenty of women – and men alike – were quite happy Saturday as Erick Aybar and “The Natural” – Mike Trout – each went deep but it wasn’t enough as the L.A. Angels lost to the Kansas City Royals in 13 innings, 7-4, at Angels Stadium in Anaheim.
Trailing 3-0 with a runner aboard in the 4th inning, Aybar got his third round-tripper of the season taking K.C. starter James Shields just inside the fair pole in right field bringing the Halos to within one at 3-2.
In the next frame, Trout went deep for the second straight game taking the proverbial Shields offering to straight away center into the fountains for his 10th of the year tying the game at 3.
Albert Pujols came up next and launched a shot deep to left that looked as if he was going over the wall. Meanwhile, Royals left-fielder Alex Gordon looked like he made a tremendous juggling catch robbing Pujols of a homerun.
Angels manager Mike Scioscia asked for a replay of the catch contending that in between Gordon’s juggling of the ball prior to finally making the grab for the out, the ball hit the padding on the wall making it a fair ball.
After reviewing the play, the ball hit Gordon in the head then shoulder then it hit the padding of the wall ricocheting onto his arm and into his glove nullifying the grab. The umpires awarded Pujols second base because he was rounding into second when the out call was made.
"When he (Gordon) juggled the ball, I saw it hit the padded part of the fence before he caught it." Explained Scioscia after the game.
A crucial call-reversal because a few batters later with Aybar at the plate and Pujols now at third, Shields threw a wild pitch that got past catcher Salvador Perez allowing Pujols to score with the go-ahead run.
Royals tied it in the top of the 7th when Perez hit into a bases loaded double play scoring Eric Hosmer from third.
Fell apart for the Halos after the leadoff man got aboard in the top of the 13th. Alcides Escobar moved pinch runner Jarrod Dyson to 3rd on the sacrifice. Reliever Michael Morin threw it away at first. That scored Dyson making it 5-4 Royals with one away.
That was the Angels’ third error of the game. Morin would get the loss.
Nori Aoki came up and singled past a diving Howie Kendrick driving in Escobar making it 6-4, Kansas City. They added one more insurance run to make it 7-4 and closer Greg Holland shut the door in the bottom of the frame getting his 14th save of the season.
Angels’ starter Matt Shoemaker had a solid outing going 5 innings, allowing 3 runs on 8 hits. He also struck out 6.
Royals starter James Shields went 6 innings giving up 4 runs on 9 hits.