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L.A. Angels (14-9) «000010411790
Boston (15-9)0102000025101

Matthews Jr. anchors Angels' big seventh-inning rally vs. BoSox

CBSSports.com wire reports
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BOSTON -- Joe Saunders gave the Los Angeles Angels everything he could and headed for the clubhouse to ice his arm.

After six solid innings Thursday, he was trailing 3-1 and headed for his first loss.

That was before the Angels rallied in the top of the seventh, scoring four times to go ahead on Gary Matthews Jr.'s two-run single, then adding key runs in the eighth and the ninth to beat the Boston Red Sox 7-5.

"It was awesome to be able to come back like that at Fenway Park," Saunders said. "It's a big confidence boost."

Saunders (4-0) gave up three runs on seven hits and three walks, striking out three.

Playing the team that swept them out of two of their last three playoff appearances, the Angels won two out of three. They took a 5-3 lead in the seventh off three Red Sox relievers who gave up four singles and three walks.

A day after hitting two solo homers, Matthews had three hits and three RBI. He hit a two-run single to break a 3-3 tie in the seventh, then made it 6-3 with an RBI double in the eighth -- a run that proved important after David Ortiz hit a two-run homer with two out in the ninth.

"We're swinging the bats much closer to what we expected than we did in the playoffs last year," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "When we are playing well, we can play with any team that's out there. It's just a matter of bringing that game on a daily basis. We weren't able to do that last year."

Scot Shields pitched a perfect eighth, then gave up Ortiz's home run. Francisco Rodriguez got Manny Ramirez on a deep fly to center to end the game and earn his ninth save.

Javier Lopez started the seventh and did not record an out, then Manny Delcarmen (0-1) had the identical line with two runs allowed on one hit and one walk.

"It got away in a hurry," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "We were trying to piece together the seventh, ... and it didn't work from the very beginning."

Mike Napoli hit home run No. 5; last year, he didn't hit his fifth until May 23.

Ramirez had three hits for Boston, and Coco Crisp returned from two weeks of hamstring problems to hit two doubles and steal third both times.

The collapse of the Boston bullpen deprived emergency fill-in Justin Masterson of a victory in his major league debut. After scratching starters Josh Beckett (neck) and Daisuke Matsuzaka (flu) in consecutive days and moving Thursday's pitcher Jon Lester to Wednesday, the Red Sox called up Masterson for his first outing above Double-A.

The 23-year-old Masterson is the first Jamaican-born player to pitch in the majors, the Red Sox said. He allowed one run on two hits and four walks in six innings while striking out four, but wound up with a no-decision.

"Masterson came in today out of the blue for a call-up and threw us six great innings," Delcarmen said. "I came in, first and second, and wanted to get in there and try to get out of it, and it didn't happen today."

Kevin Youkilis also returned to the Boston lineup after missing a game with a lower back problem. Add a potential knee problem to his woes: He ran into the rolled up tarp when chasing after a foul popup in the seventh, but stayed in the game.

Notes

  • To make room for Masterson, reliever Craig Hansen was sent back to Triple-A Pawtucket.
  • Boston 3B Mike Lowell was headed for a weekend of minor league rehab in Pawtucket.
  • Beckett threw on the side and is on track to start Sunday. Matsuzaka might not make the trip to Tampa Bay because of his illness.
  • Ramirez picked up a double in the seventh when center fielder Torii Hunter gloved his deep fly, but dropped it after colliding with Matthews.
  • Kevin Cash, subbing for flu-ridden Boston C Jason Varitek for the fourth consecutive game, doubled.
  • The Red Sox said after the game that they will purchase the contract of Bryan Corey from Pawtucket on Friday to take Masterson's spot on the roster.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Francisco Rodriguez celebrates his ninth save of the season.  (AP)
Francisco Rodriguez celebrates his ninth save of the season. (AP)

Players of the Game
Boston

J. Lugo
AB 4
R 0
H 0
HR 0
RBI 0
Anaheim

G. Matthews
AB 5
R 0
H 3
HR 0
RBI 3
 

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Los Angeles Angels
Chone Figgins, 3B4011110 .337
Gary Matthews Jr., RF5033010 .266
Vladimir Guerrero, DH2000303 .276
Garret Anderson, LF5110015 .234
Torii Hunter, CF5000024 .313
Casey Kotchman, 1B2100303 .321
Maicer Izturis, 2B3111101 .194
Mike Napoli, C4211122 .229
Erick Aybar, SS4221000 .358
Totals3479797  
Batting
2B - Gary Matthews Jr. (4, Aardsma)
HR - Mike Napoli (5, Masterson)
SF - Maicer Izturis (1)
RBI - Chone Figgins (5), Gary Matthews Jr. 3 (18), Maicer Izturis (8), Mike Napoli (10), Erick Aybar (6)
2-OUT RBI - Gary Matthews Jr. (6)
SB - Garret Anderson (1, 2nd base off Tavarez/Cash), Maicer Izturis (5, 2nd base off Masterson/Cash), Erick Aybar (4, 2nd base off Aardsma/Cash)
Team LOB - 10
Los Angeles Angels
Joe Saunders (W,4-0) 6733330 2.55
Justin Speier (H,6) 1100010 4.32
Scot Shields (H,5) 1.2222011 2.53
Francisco Rodriguez (S,9) 0.1000000 4.66
Pitches-Strikes - Joe Saunders 100-57, Justin Speier 19-11, Scot Shields 28-21, Francisco Rodriguez 5-3
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joe Saunders 11-4, Justin Speier 1-1, Scot Shields 4-0
Batters Faced - Joe Saunders 28, Justin Speier 4, Scot Shields 7, Francisco Rodriguez 1
Boston Red Sox
Jacoby Ellsbury, RF5110003 .290
Dustin Pedroia, 2B5010020 .351
David Ortiz, DH5112001 .189
Manny Ramirez, LF5130001 .356
Kevin Youkilis, 1B2100202 .345
Jed Lowrie, 3B3010000 .348
Julio Lugo, SS4000014 .321
Coco Crisp, CF4122000 .341
Kevin Cash, C2011112 .250
   a- Sean Casey, PH1000010 .346
Totals36510535  
a-struck out for Cash in the 9th
Batting
2B - Manny Ramirez (8, Speier), Coco Crisp 2 (4, Saunders, Saunders), Kevin Cash (3, Saunders)
HR - David Ortiz (4, Shields)
SH - Jed Lowrie (1)
RBI - David Ortiz 2 (20), Coco Crisp 2 (5), Kevin Cash (2)
2-OUT RBI - David Ortiz 2 (11), Coco Crisp (2), Kevin Cash (2)
SB - Coco Crisp 2 (4, 3rd base off Saunders/Napoli, 3rd base off Saunders/Napoli)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - Pedroia-Lugo-Youkilis
PB - Kevin Cash (3)
E - Coco Crisp (1, Misplayed grounder)
Boston Red Sox
Justin Masterson 6211441 1.50
Javier Lopez0122100 4.82
Manny Delcarmen (L,0-1)0122100 5.06
Hideki Okajima 1200120 0.96
David Aardsma 1211110 3.55
Julian Tavarez 1110100 5.23
IBB - Guerrero by Hideki Okajima
Pitches-Strikes - Justin Masterson 95-58, Javier Lopez 12-5, Manny Delcarmen 8-2, Hideki Okajima 32-19, David Aardsma 26-17, Julian Tavarez 16-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Justin Masterson 10-3, David Aardsma 1-1, Julian Tavarez 1-2
Batters Faced - Justin Masterson 23, Javier Lopez 2, Manny Delcarmen 2, Hideki Okajima 6, David Aardsma 6, Julian Tavarez 5
Game Information
Attendance - 37848
Game Time - 3:17
Temperature - 75
Umpires - Home - Jerry Layne, First Base - Phil Cuzzi, Second Base - Jim Wolf, Third Base - Ed Montague