The Ventura County Gulls dropped their seventh game of the second half against the Palm Springs Angels, 6-5, on Friday in Palm Springs, and if they're not careful they could drop out of sight.
After staying within three games of the Angels most of the first half, the Gulls (4-7) are 4 1/2 games back this half.
Ty Van Burkleo, formerly of Canoga Park High, scored the winning run on a sacrifice fly by Billy Geivett, making a losing pitcher out of Mark Dickman (5-1).
Van Burkleo gave the Angels a 2-0 lead in the third inning, blasting a two-run home run over the left-center field fence off Gulls starter Jose Mesa. It was Van Burkleo's 15th homer, tops in the league.
The Gulls, who stranded 13 runners, struck for three in the fourth. Santiago Garcia walked and advanced to third when Angels starter Todd Eggertson threw away a pickoff attempt.
The error was made moot when Darryl Landrum, who went 2 for 5, followed with a triple, scoring Garcia easily. Landrum later hit his 14th home run.
Geronimo Berroa singled Landrum home to tie it, 2-2, then Domingo Martinez doubled and Berroa advanced to third. Jim Bishop and Kevin Batiste drew consecutive walks to force in a run and give the Gulls the lead, 3-2. The one run, however, wasn't cushion enough against the Gulls' defense.
In the fifth, Palm Springs' Mitch Seoane singled, stole second and took third when the throw from Gulls catcher Greg Myers sailed into the outfield. A two-out error by shortstop Eric Yelding made the inning complete and the Gulls' lead a thing of the past.
Palm Springs took a 5-3 lead in the sixth on an RBI single by Dario Nunez and Doug Jennings' sacrifice fly.
Landrum's homer and a Martinez's RBI triple tied the game, 5-5, in the top of the seventh. Brian Harvey came on to pitch for Palm Springs with two out in the eighth and allowed only one hit while striking out three to earn his ninth save.
Pitchers Scott Marrett of the Palm Springs Angels and David Walsh of the Ventura County Gulls were neighbors growing up in Woodland Hills. Walsh, 25, played baseball at El Camino Real High with Marrett's older brother, Randy. . . . In five starts since returning to the San Jose Bees, former Oakland A's pitcher Mike Norris has an ERA of 1.19 and has struck out 23 in 22 innings. . . . Tyler Brilinski, who was leading the California League with a .343 batting average before injuring a knee a month ago, has returned to the lineup of the Modesto Bees and is showing no signs of rustiness. Brilinski is 9-for-20 with two home runs since his return and despite missing a month, is tied for the league lead in home runs at 14. . . . Chris Miller, an All-Pac 10 quarterback last season at the University of Oregon, is playing shortstop for the Salinas Spurs. Miller, who was selected by Seattle in the January, 1985, free agent draft, will return to the Oregon football team in fall . . . Believe it or not: Ben Amaya, a catcher for Chattanooga of the Double-A Southern League, was hit by pitches three straight times on Friday, June 13. Amaya was hit five times that weekend.