HOUSTON — The
They got a quality start from Joe Blanton but grounded into four double plays and went hitless in five at-bats with runners in scoring position in a 3-1 loss to the
The Angels have lost 11 of 14 games to fall 9 1/2 games behind Texas in the
Almost equally stunning for a team with a $148-million payroll and
"Right now, we're not doing enough things well to set the games up on our terms," Manager
The Angels actually caught a break in the bottom of the eighth when umpire Bill Welke called
Then came a ninth-inning threat, as
But Houston closer
Trout also followed
Is this getting beyond frustrating for the Angels, who can't seem to match a solid pitching effort with good hitting?
"It's still frustrating," said Trumbo, whose wicked first-inning line drive with a runner on second was caught by the leaping Gonzalez at short. "You never want to stop feeling frustrated because then you've pretty much given up hope."
Blanton, who fell to 0-6 with a 5.66 earned run average, retired the side in order in the first and second innings, a great start for a right-hander who had one one-two-three inning in his first six starts.
But doubles by Matt Dominguez, Gonzalez and Paredes resulted in two runs in the third, and
"We're just missing by a beat right now," Blanton said. "Hopefully, it comes around soon."