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LAst Night's Action: Another Angels Pitching Let Down

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Texas Rangers defeat LA Angels 7-3. At least the Angels’ Monday night starter Garrett Richards had an excuse leaving the game early: he pulled his groin muscle. On Tuesday night, starter Tyler Chatwood couldn’t throw a strike.

Chatwood needed 32 pitches to get out of the first inning, and by the end of it he had given up two runs. After getting out the second inning unscathed, his third inning was a nightmare. Homer to Josh Hamilton; single to Michael Young; walk to Nelson Cruz; single to Mike Napoli; two-RBI single to Mitch Moreland. Manager Mike Scioscia pulled Chatwood and went to his bullpen down 5-0 with two runners left on base and no outs.

Fortunately reliver Trevor Bell got out the third with no harm done - a double to Yorvit Torrealba and a strike out of Endy Chavez. Bell eventually was tagged for two additional runs, but at that point it didn’t matter much. The Angels offense couldn’t figure out Rangers’ starter Derek Holland especially after running themselves out of the third inning - Erick Aybar making the second out at third base on Peter Bourjos’ single, and Bourjos following up getting caught stealing to end the inning.

Scioscia has tried to deflect the heat off of the pitching by telling reporters that the offense has to do their jobs. But after 122 games, the offense isn’t going to start to become prolific in a snap. So when the pitching wilts in the dog days of the summer during a division race, you’re a little screwed.

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The Angels will have veterans Ervin Santana and Jered Weaver to close out the series to hopefully bring the team back to being four games back, just where they started before the series started.

Milwaukee Brewers defeat LA Dodgers 2-1. With runners on first and second and no out in the bottom of the ninth, Yuniesky Betancourt was going to bunt to move the runners along. In other words, he was giving the Dodgers a free out. All reliever Mike MacDougal had to do was throw a strike. But he didn’t, not one.

Perhaps MacDougal is allergic to throwing strikes since I haven’t seen him do it consistently all season long. Perhaps he was in awe of Betancourt’s fielding ability (or, in awe of how Steve Lyons could call Betancourt a good fielder.) Regardless, MacDougal threw four straight balls to loaded the bases.

After hemming and hawing, MacDougal finally had to face pinch-hitter Mark Kotsay. The positive for MacDougal was that he tossed a strike. Unfortunately the strike was sent up the middle for the walk-off single.

Fortunately KCAL wanted to keep the masses entertain, so their text question of the night: “Which free agent should the Dodgers go after this offseason: Albert Pujols or Prince Fielder?” Hilarious.

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TONIGHT’S ACTION

LA Dodgers at Milwaukee Brewers. 5:10 p.m. KCAL9, AM 790 KABC.

Texas Rangers at LA Angels. 7:05 p.m. FSWest, AM 830 KLAA.