Angels Get Win in 13 on a Slam by Jones
One night after scoring just one run against the man atop their most wanted list, Cleveland Indians’ pitcher Bert Blyleven, the Angels nearly pulled off the same thing against someone they had hardly heard of.
Roy Smith, a 23-year-old making his first major league appearance of 1985, had the Angels down, 2-1, entering the ninth inning Tuesday night, working on a Blyleven carbon copy before an Anaheim Stadium crowd of 25,610.
But in the ninth inning, the Angels finally rediscovered some of the offense that produced four straight victories on the road last week, producing a 2-2 tie and sending the game into extra innings, where the Angels eventually won it in the 13th, 7-3, on Ruppert Jones’ second career grand slam.
Brian Downing tied it with a two-out double in the bottom of the 13th, driving a pitch by Neal Heaton off the wall in left center to score Juan Beniquez, who had walked. Heaton then walked Reggie Jackson and Doug DeCinces to load the bases.
That brought up Jones, who finally brought an end to a game that climaxed just short of the five-hour mark. After four hours and 46 minutes of baseball, Jones sent an 0-1 pitch by Heaton (4-9) over the right-field fence for his 10th homer of the season.
Stu Cliburn, who pitched the 13th inning for the Angels, earned the victory, improving his record to 3-1.
The Indians had taken a 3-2 lead in the top of the 13th when Brook Jacoby walked, moved to second on Pat Tabler’s sacrifice bunt and scored on Tony Bernazard’s single to center.
Both teams squandered chances to win it, the Indians’ missed opportunity coming in the 12th and the Angels’ in the 11th.
Cleveland had the go-ahead run in scoring position with one out in the 12th when Otis Nixon reached first on Rob Wilfong’s fielding error and stole second. But he remained there when Angels reliever Donnie Moore got Brett Butler to fly to left, walked Julio Franco and got Joe Carter to force Franco at second.
The Angels’ wasted chance came in the 11th when their first two hitters of the inning, Wilfong and Rod Carew, reached base on infield errors.
Wilfong was on third base with two outs after Juan Beniquez forced Carew on the front end of a double play. But Jamie Easterly, the Indians’ fourth relief pitcher of the night, got Reggie Jackson to fly to left to end the threat.
The Angels managed another baserunner in the bottom of the 12th, Jerry Narron, who walked with two outs. But Dick Schofield struck out to bring on the 13th inning.
Smith, who had yielded just one unearned run through eight innings, opened the ninth by surrendering a single to Bobby Grich. That brought on Jeff Barkley from the Indians’ bullpen and pinch-runner Gary Pettis from the Angels’ bench.
Pettis, running for Grich, advanced to second on Craig Gerber’s sacrifice bunt and scored on Bob Boone’s single to center field.
That tied it. Then, after Wilfong, running for Boone, stole second, the Angels had the winning run in scoring position.
But, following a walk to Carew and a fly out by Beniquez, Cleveland reliever Bryan Clark came on to strike out pinch-hitter Brian Downing to send the game into the 10th inning.
Smith didn’t exactly fool the Angels at the outset. He yielded two singles in both of the first and second innings and allowed six hits through the first four innings.
But he escaped unscathed, thanks to a couple fortunate, for the Indians, bounces of the ball.
In the first inning, with Carew on first base and one out, Daryl Sconiers blooped a single to center field. Carew was easily on his way to third so Brett Butler, running in to field the ball, directed his cutoff throw to second base.
Butler, however, missed the cutoff man, the ball skidding past shortstop Julio Franco toward first base. But it was a mistake that worked to the Indians’ advantage.
Smith, sprinting to back up the play, gloved the ball, whirled--and there was Sconiers, taking a wide turn around first base.
Sconiers backpedaled, wound up on his back and was called out, with Smith making a sweeping tag.
After walking Jackson, Smith got out of the inning when Doug DeCinces flew out to left.
An inning later, Smith had two more runners on base with two out, followingsingles by Grich and Gerber. Carew hit a liner back through the middle, which nicked Smith’s right leg and rolled toward second base.
Franco, stumbling to field the ball, grabbed it and, while on his knees, threw to first to retire Carew.
The bounce finally went the Angels’ way in the sixth, when they ended Smith’s shutout bid with an unearned run. They scored after Cleveland second baseman Tony Bernazard bobbled a grounder by DeCinces for a leadoff error.
DeCinces then took third on a single by Ruppert Jones and scored when Gerber forced Jones at second base.
That cut the Indians’ 2-0 lead in half. Cleveland scored in the first inning, when Butler led off with a double and Franco singled him home, and in the sixth, when Jacoby sent his 10th home run of the season over the left-field fence.
Angel Notes Dick Schofield and his .194 batting average spent the night on the bench for the second game, with Gene Mauch starting rookie Craig Gerber at shortstop. “I don’t intend for Dick Schofield to hit .200,” Mauch said. “I’ve never given him two days off in a row before. Maybe this will help him. Dick’s going to be a good player and this is an attempt to speed up his being a good player.” . . . The days are gone, according to Mauch, when a team could afford to carry a weak-hitting shortstop in its lineup for very long. Especially in Anaheim. “Years ago, I saw a lot of weak-hitting shortstops stay in the lineup,” Mauch said, “but back then, a weak-hitting shortstop used to be .240, .255. You don’t look back and see any shortstop who held his job hitting .200.” . . . Gary Pettis was also held out of the starting lineup because of a sore left hand he suffered while swinging a bat during Saturday’s game in Chicago. Pettis’ status is on a day-to-day basis. . . . The fourth phase of Steve Rogers’ five-start trial with the Angels’ Triple-A affiliate at Edmonton Tuesday was less than scintillating: 9 hits, 6 runs, 4 earned runs, 4 strikeouts, 5 walks and 1 hit batter in 7 innings. Rogers threw 121 pitches but received no decision as the Trappers lost to Phoenix, 10-7, in 10 innings. . . . The Angels conclude their brief three-game homestand tonight when Kirk McCaskill (2-5) opposes Rick Behenna (0-2).