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Angels take game 1 of freeway series

Howie Kendrick is congratulated by Hank Conger after scoring a run
Photo by Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images

The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim picked up four runs in the top half of the first inning in their Monday night match up with their southern California rivals; the Los Angeles Dodgers and did not look back en route to a 5-0 victory. The inning began with Angels lead off man Cole Calhoun reaching first base on a single and then being driven in by Mike Trout who doubled to left field after Dodgers left fielder Carl Crawford missed a diving attempt to catch the ball. Trout was later driven in by an Albert Pujols double that made the game 2-0 early on. It seemed the Dodgers would escape the inning with minimal damage but a throwing error by shortstop Hanley Ramirez with two outs allowed Erik Aybar to score and the Angels eventually finished the inning with a 4-0 lead. Ramirez committed a second error in the fourth inning but it proved to be non-crucial as the angels failed to capitalize. The Angels struck again in the top of the sixth inning when Josh Hamilton blasted a solo homerun to right-center field. The homer capped the five-run evening for the Angels offense.

The Dodgers threatened in the bottom of the second inning when they loaded the bases with two outs but pitcher Zack Greinke flew out harmlessly to right fielder Cole Calhoun to end the inning. They never made a serious offensive threat the rest of the game as Garrett Richards was phenomenal for the Angels once again striking out nine and picking up his first career complete game shutout en route to racking up his 12th win of the season. After the first inning, Zack Greinke settled down and pitched six more innings for the Dodgers before being pulled in the eighth. Unfortunately he did not get any run support from his offense and wound up with his 7th loss of the year. The game marked the first regular season match up between phenoms Mike Trout and Yasiel Puig who previously faced each other during the all star game in Minneapolis last month. Trout went 1-4 with an RBI and a run scored while Puig finished 0-4 with a strikeout.

The win improves the Angels to 67-64 on the year while the Dodgers drop to 63-50. The freeway series will resume tomorrow night at Dodger stadium with Hector Santiago pitching for the Angels and Clayton Kershaw going for the Dodgers. The series will then shift to Anaheim on Wednesday night. The Angels victory also marked a milestone for manager Mike Scioscia who picked up his 1300th win as a major league manager.