Rockets were flying all over Globe Life Park in the bottom of the first inning Monday night, and there was no life preserver in sight for
Not that he was looking for one. When you sign as an undrafted free agent out of college and spend six full seasons in the minor leagues before getting a whiff of the big leagues, you don't expect any handouts.
So after getting pounded for three runs and four hits and putting his team in an early hole against the
He returned to the dugout for a quick damage assessment.
"Man, that inning stunk — it was terrible," the right-hander said. "You reflect on it for four seconds, then you just forget about it. There's nothing you can do about it. It already happened."
Whether it was well-timed amnesia or a refusal to be rattled, Shoemaker seemed like a different pitcher in the second. He gave up no runs and two hits over the next 51/3 innings, and the Angels scored four runs in the fifth for a 6-3 come-from-behind victory.
Collin Cowgill hit a score-tying two-run home run to center field, and
Shoemaker, who went 16-4 with a 3.04 earned-run average and finished second in
"There's a presence to him on the mound," Manager
Elvis Andrus hit a sacrifice fly for a 3-0 lead, but that also began a stretch in which Shoemaker retired 10 straight batters before giving up a two-out bloop double to
"The first four or five hitters, everything was up and flat, and those guys didn't miss anything," Scioscia said. "Then Shoe's command started to come, he got the ball down and brought all his pitches into the game. Pitching into the seventh after the first four hitters says a lot about some of the adjustments he made."
It also says a lot about Shoemaker's resilience and makeup.