The baseball landed in between the men left standing in
Cron’s teammates 427 feet from home plate celebrated as his two-run home run grazed the edge of their dirt mound. It was the sixth inning, but the
"This," Cron said, "is when baseball gets fun."
On Thursday afternoon,
After that night’s game, Angels manager
Norris had started 185 major league games but not one in 2017. He was this team's closer for much of the season. So it was a curious choice. But someone had to begin the parade from the Angels' bullpen in the team's quest to replace the injured Andrew Heaney.
The ordering seemed to work. Norris needed only seven pitches to finish the first inning and 10 to complete the second, helped by Cron’s sliding spear of a
"Our bullpen stubbed their toes a couple times tonight," Scioscia said. "But the other guys picked it up."
Texas then matched the Angels’ output in each of the next two innings against Chavez. In the fifth, Gallo earned a single on a dribbler, Middlebrooks drilled a double to the wall, and Brett Nicholas singled to score them both. In the sixth, Delino DeShields singled, and
The Rangers led 4-2 but only until the bottom of the inning. Mike Trout led off with a single and scored when Upton doubled again. Calhoun walked, and Simmons singled into right to score Upton and tie the score. Luis Valbuena hit a sacrifice fly to push the Angels ahead, and Cron sauntered to home plate.
The Angels managed no more offense after his strike. While striking out in the seventh inning,
Even staked to a three-run lead, Bedrosian found trouble in the eighth, loading the bases without recording an out. Quickly, Scioscia turned to Parker, his reliever most likely to produce a strikeout.
Parker notched only one strikeout, but he also did not surrender any hits. Two Texas sacrifice flies made it a one-run game. Left in for another inning with no one warming behind him, Parker retired the Rangers in order.
"We needed someone to step up tonight," Simmons said. "He definitely did that."