The result of Saturday afternoon’s game against the White Sox was an antithesis to what the Angels have managed to do every other time so far in Spring Training: win. No one anticipated that the Angels would go 1.000 throughout these practice games, but the pitching, hitting, and defense were all awry for the Southern California-centered squad.
Southpaw Tyler Skaggs did not have his best stuff to put it gingerly provided that he did not make it through the first stanza. He walked the 4-5-6 punch in the Chicago order, which accordingly forced in a run. In all sincerity, Skaggs should have gotten through the inning without too much energy being expended, but a throwing error by Yunel Escobar with two outs caused the inning to continue.
In the opposing dugout, their starter, Lucas Giolito, pitched a rock solid three innings. He only allowed a single hit to the Halos and he struck out a total of three on the afternoon. Additionally, Giolito did not walk a batter.
The Angels started to get a small rally brewing in the seventh after C.J. Cron and Jefry Marté earned consecutive walks. However, backup catcher Tony Sanchez lined into an unassisted double play to Yolmer Sanchez right when things started to get interesting. The Halos did manufacture a run later in the inning with Michael Hermosillo at the plate. After Marté stole second, Hermosillo cashed him in on a one-bagger to center. This closed the deficit to 4-1.
The White Sox got the run and some back in the following two frames. First baseman Danny Hayes clubbed a two-run blast to right-center field in the seventh off highly touted prospect Nate Smith. The ballgame really got out of hand, though, in the eighth due to both defensive and pitching goofs. A familiar face, Peter Bourjos, obtained an RBI triple to deep center but ended up scoring a wild throw to increase his team’s lead 8-1. The following batter, Eddie Alvarez, followed up the scorching triple with an inside-the-park homer of all things.
The Angels tried to come back in the ninth to extend the contest, but it was not close to enough. A Michael Barash double eventually led to another RBI from Hermosillo. Beyond that, though, nothing else special transpired. Suffice to say, it was just too much to overcome in such a thin strand of time.
Ace starter Garrett Richards will be making his spring debut tomorrow afternoon against the Cincinnati Reds. It is his first start since the earlier stages of last year given the stem-cell therapy he underwent. First pitch will be around 12:10 PST at Tempe Diablo Stadium.