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Baltimore (53-58)0000100045100
L.A. Angels (70-42) «1022000016101

Angels overcome blown lead in ninth with game-winning rally

CBSSports.com wire reports
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ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Francisco Rodriguez and George Sherrill were teammates in the All-Star game three weeks ago. Neither closer pitched like a star Monday night.

Sherrill walked Chone Figgins with two outs in the ninth inning to force in the winning run, and the Los Angeles Angels regrouped to beat the Baltimore Orioles 6-5 after Rodriguez blew a four-run lead.

"That's not our modus operandi," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "We had to earn it. We had to come back and win it. They have a pretty good bullpen."

Kevin Millar led off the Orioles' ninth with a leadoff single against Scot Shields, who retired the next two batters. But pinch-hitter Alex Cintron kept the rally going with a single, bringing Rodriguez into the game.

The major league saves leader came in to face switch-hitter Brian Roberts, whose grounder toward the hole was booted for an error by two-time Gold Glove first baseman Mark Teixeira -- playing his first home game for the Angels after a trade from Atlanta. Nick Markakis followed with a two-run single and Melvin Mora tied it with a two-run double.

"I was surprised they took Shields out of the game and brought K-Rod in," Mora said. "But I like that situation, especially when you see the best pitcher out there. He's the best closer in baseball right now, so you have nothing to lose. You just try to tie the game and see what happens, and Nick gave me a chance to do it."

Sherrill, who pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings in the All-Star game, was working his second inning of relief when he gave up Torii Hunter's leadoff double. Hunter advanced on a groundout before Howie Kendrick was intentionally walked. Juan Rivera popped out, but Sherrill (3-5) walked Jeff Mathis and the left-hander went to 3-2 on Figgins before throwing his next pitch above the letters.

"I think the pressure is on him," Figgins said. "In that situation he has to keep the ball in the zone and come to me."

Rodriguez (1-2) was credited with the victory despite his fourth blown save in 49 chances.

"I'm real proud of the team. They came back against the best team in baseball in the ninth inning after two were out and gave ourselves a chance to win," Baltimore manager Dave Trembley said. "I've got a lot of respect for them. I wish we could have won the game because it would have been something special for us, but I think we showed what we're made of. The actions speak louder than anything you could say."

Joe Saunders, trying to tie for the major league lead with 15 victories, left after six innings with a 5-1 lead. The All-Star left-hander allowed a run and six hits.

Baltimore's only run off him came without the benefit of a hit, after Saunders hit Luke Scott with a pitch and walked two batters. Scott came home on a groundout by Markakis.

The Angels have won 15 of 19 and are off to the best start in franchise history with a major league-leading 70-42 record -- two games better than the 1989 club.

Baltimore's Dennis Sarfate gave up five runs, six hits and three walks over three-plus innings in his second big league start.

"I'm just trying to make the adjustment from the bullpen to the starting rotation and getting a different mentality. But I need to take a little bit of the pressure off myself and the way I think, and just go after guys," Sarfate said. "My wife text-messaged me after I got back in here and said: 'You're trying too hard.' But that's always been my thing."

Teixeira robbed Aubrey Huff of a potential extra-base hit with a lunging grab of his first-inning grounder, then opened the scoring in the bottom half with a broken-bat RBI single.

His second time up, Teixeira hit a line drive so hard off the 18-foot wall in right-center that he had to settle for a single. Two pitches later, Vladimir Guerrero hit his 19th home run, giving the Angels a 3-0 lead.

Sarfate hit Mathis with a pitch for the second successive time to open the fourth, leading to a pair of runs that extended the margin to 5-0. Randor Bierd plunked Hunter on the left wrist with the bases loaded, and Teixeira scored on an infield single by Garret Anderson that extended his hitting streak to 12 games.

Notes

  • After the game, the Orioles optioned INF Brandon Fahey to Triple-A Norfolk to open a roster spot for LHP Chris Waters, who will make his major league debut Tuesday night against Jon Garland.
  • CF Adam Jones, who fouled a ball off his foot Saturday night against Seattle, underwent a CT scan on his left foot and left the team after the game to return to Baltimore for an MRI.
  • Teixeira was assigned a place of honor in the Angels clubhouse by clubhouse manager Ken Higdon -- Tim Salmon's old locker. Salmon, who retired after the 2006 season, is the franchise leader in home runs with 299.
 
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 blows the save, but his teammates pick him up and hand him a victory.  (AP)
Francisco Rodriguez blows the save, but his teammates pick him up and hand him a victory. (AP)

Players of the Game
Anaheim

V. Guerrero
AB 5
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 2
Baltimore

N. Markakis
AB 5
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 3
 

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Baltimore Orioles
Brian Roberts, 2B4110110 .287
Nick Markakis, RF5123020 .296
Melvin Mora, 3B4022104 .254
Aubrey Huff, DH5010013 .303
Ramon Hernandez, C4010001 .253
Kevin Millar, 1B4110001 .251
Luke Scott, LF3100002 .252
Jay Payton, CF3010111 .244
Juan Castro, SS3000003 .135
   a- Alex Cintron, PH-SS1110000 .293
Totals36510535  
a-singled for Castro in the 9th
Batting
2B - Melvin Mora (21, Rodriguez)
RBI - Nick Markakis 3 (60), Melvin Mora 2 (69)
2-OUT RBI - Nick Markakis 2 (16), Melvin Mora 2 (27)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - Mora-Millar
PB - Ramon Hernandez (7)
Baltimore Orioles
Dennis Sarfate 3655311 4.58
Randor Bierd 2.2200220 1.29
Alberto Castillo 0.2100000 1.93
Fernando Cabrera 0.2000000 4.60
George Sherrill (L,3-5) 1.2111310 4.27
IBB - Teixeira by Randor Bierd, Kendrick by George Sherrill
HBP - Mathis (by Dennis Sarfate), Mathis (by Dennis Sarfate), Hunter (by Randor Bierd)
Pitches-Strikes - Dennis Sarfate 71-34, Randor Bierd 42-25, Alberto Castillo 11-7, Fernando Cabrera 9-6, George Sherrill 37-17
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dennis Sarfate 6-1, Randor Bierd 2-4, Alberto Castillo 2-0, Fernando Cabrera 1-1, George Sherrill 2-2
Batters Faced - Dennis Sarfate 19, Randor Bierd 13, Alberto Castillo 3, Fernando Cabrera 2, George Sherrill 9
Los Angeles Angels
Chone Figgins, 3B3211302 .288
Erick Aybar, SS4010011 .284
Mark Teixeira, 1B4221110 .283
Vladimir Guerrero, RF5122004 .284
Torii Hunter, CF3121101 .284
Garret Anderson, DH4011104 .285
Howie Kendrick, 2B4010114 .331
Juan Rivera, LF5000005 .223
Jeff Mathis, C2000111 .211
Totals34610684  
Batting
2B - Torii Hunter (26, Sherrill)
HR - Vladimir Guerrero (19, Sarfate)
SH - Erick Aybar (5)
RBI - Chone Figgins (14), Mark Teixeira (84), Vladimir Guerrero 2 (60), Torii Hunter (60), Garret Anderson (60)
2-OUT RBI - Chone Figgins (6), Torii Hunter (19), Garret Anderson (26)
SB - Howie Kendrick 2 (10, 2nd base off Castillo/Hernandez, 3rd base off Cabrera/Hernandez)
Team LOB - 14
Fielding
DP - Figgins-Kendrick-Teixeira, Kendrick-Aybar-Teixeira
E - Mark Teixeira (3, Misplayed grounder)
Los Angeles Angels
Joe Saunders 6611220 3.03
Justin Speier 1000010 4.79
Jose Arredondo 1000110 1.09
Scot Shields 0.2220000 2.93
Francisco Rodriguez (BS,4; W,1-2) 0.1220010 2.40
HBP - Scott (by Joe Saunders)
WP - Francisco Rodriguez (5)
Pitches-Strikes - Joe Saunders 98-58, Justin Speier 14-10, Jose Arredondo 15-6, Scot Shields 10-6, Francisco Rodriguez 16-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joe Saunders 9-5, Jose Arredondo 1-1, Francisco Rodriguez 1-0
Batters Faced - Joe Saunders 25, Justin Speier 3, Jose Arredondo 4, Scot Shields 4, Francisco Rodriguez 4
Game Information
Attendance - 41902
Game Time - 3:06
Temperature - 76
Umpires - Home - Field Culbreth, First Base - Jim Reynolds, Second Base - Brian Runge, Third Base - Gary Cederstrom