KEY MOMENT: The outlook was not bright for the Texas Rangers by the time Albert Pujols stepped to the plate in the first inning. Right-hander Colby Lewis hadn't recorded an out yet. In the first two games of the series, the Rangers' starting pitching had been demolished. Pujols lined an easy single. The Angels led 2-0. The Rangers had seen this before, and it only got worse from there.
ON THE MOUND: Technically, the Angels had their worst pitching game of the series, but it mattered little. Left-hander C.J. Wilson challenged hitters and gave up three runs in six innings. “It really was the easiest start I've had all year,” Wilson said of the run support. After beginning his career with nine scoreless innings, right-hander Trevor Gott finally gave up his first runs, on a two-run home run by Rougned Odor in the seventh inning. Right-hander Joe Smith pitched a scoreless eighth inning, and closer Huston Street allowed a run in the ninth.
AT THE PLATE: The Angels scored in double digits for the second straight game. This time nine players had hits for a total of 15. Eight scored at least one run. Seven drove in a run or more. The Angels scored at least one run in each of the first five innings. A three-run first was powered by Pujols, a Kole Calhoun single and a sacrifice fly from Erick Aybar. After the Angels scored two runs each in the second and third innings, Pujols drilled a solo home run in the fourth. Calhoun punctuated a four-run fifth inning with a three-run home run. Calhoun finished the series six for 14 with two home runs and 10 RBIs.
CRON: In 96 at-bats against any opponent not named the Rangers, first baseman C.J. Cron has 13 hits. He is batting .135. Against the Rangers, though, Cron has been on fire. He has 18 hits in 34 at-bats. This weekend, he went eight for 14 with a home run and eight RBIs — one more RBI than his total against all other teams this season. “Not that he's going to always be this hot and get everything he hits to fall in, but hopefully he's going to be more productive as the summer goes on,” Manager Mike Scioscia said.
EXTRA BASES: Injured outfielder Collin Cowgill, who was recently moved to the 60-day disabled list after a setback with his right wrist injury, will be “shut down for at least a week,” Scioscia said.
UP NEXT: Left-hander Andrew Heaney (1-0, 1.38 earned-run average) will face the Colorado Rockies and right-hander Chad Bettis (4-3, 3.67) at Coors Field on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. PDT. TV: FS West; Radio 830, 1330.