Los Angeles Angeles annihilate Colorado Rockies

By Jack Etkin, The Sports Xchange

DENVER -- The Los Angeles Angels continued their offensive onslaught Tuesday night as they made quick work of Colorado starter Chad Bettis and blasted the Colorado Rockies 10-2.

Albert Pujols and Mike Trout hit three-run homers, Chris Iannetta hit a two-run shot and Matt Joyce hit a solo homer as the Angels built a 10-0 lead and knocked out Bettis after 2 1/3 innings, the shortest start of his career.


The Angels, who swept a three-game weekend series at Texas, have scored 43 runs in their four straight victories. The Angels have scored 10 runs off the opposing team's starter in consecutive games for the first time in franchise history.


"We know we're a lot better offensively than we showed in parts of the first half," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "And in these last four games, it's good to see."

Pujols hit his 26th homer in the first after Kole Calhoun doubled and Bettis hit Trout with a 1-2 pitch on his left elbow. Trout has been wearing a small guard there after having been hit in the same spot three times in the past two weeks.

Joyce led off the five-run second with his fourth homer. Johnny Giavotella singled home a run after a walk and a sacrifice, and after Calhoun followed Giavotella with a single, Trout hit his 22nd home run.

"You can definitely tell everybody in our lineup has some confidence and seems to be relaxed," Joyce said. "Anytime you have those things going for you and you can stay in the zone and put a good swing on a pitch you get to hit, good things are going to happen."

Iannetta's fourth homer came with one out in the third and finished Bettis (4-4), who won his previous two starts and allowed four runs in 12 1/3 innings in those outings. The four home runs, 10 runs and 10 earned runs allowed were all career-highs. Bettis joined Shawn Chacon as the second Rockies pitcher to allow at least 10 earned runs on four homers, depths Chacon reached on July 8, 2001, also against the Angels.


"It (stinks) to waste a day like this, because I felt really good," Bettis said. "I missed four pitches up, and it did damage."

Left-hander Andrew Heaney (2-0) made his third start for the Angels since being promoted June 24 from Triple-A Salt Lake City when Jared Weaver went on the disabled list. In his eighth career start, he pitched a career-high 7 1/3 innings in his Coors Field debut.

"I think Andrew just went out there like it was a 2-0 game and pitched well," Scioscia said. "Had great arm-side command, pitched in really well to some of the right-handed hitters and mixed in his secondary pitches."

Iannetta said fastball command to both sides of the plate is the biggest difference between Heaney now and in spring training. Weaver could return right after the All-Star break, which means the Angels might have to decide whether Heaney remains in their rotation.

"I'd like to think I've given myself an opportunity," Heaney said. "But there are five other really good pitchers that made the team for a reason, and there was a reason I didn't. So I'm just going out there and pitching to the best of my ability."


Heaney gave up a homer to left fielder Drew Stubbs in the second, his third of the year. And Heaney gave up three straight singles in the sixth, the last a run-scoring hit by shortstop Troy Tulowitzki.

The second-place Angels have won eight of their past nine games and 11 of their past 14. They are 2 1/2 games behind Houston, the closest they have been to first place in the American League West since they trailed by that margin on June 13.

The loss was the Rockies'eighth straight to the Angels and their ninth in 10 interleague games this year. The Rockies, who began a six-game homestand that will carry them to the All-Star break, have lost eight of their past 10.

Yohan Flande, after relieving Bettis, pitched 5 2/3 scoreless innings, getting 11 outs on ground balls in that span and allowing two singles, both in his final inning.

"He did a (heck) of a job under the circumstances." Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "He really saved the bullpen."

NOTES: 1B Albert Pujols tied the Angels'club record for home runs before the All-Star break. Garrett Anderson hit 26 homers before the break in 2000. . . . In 3B Nolan Arenado and 2B DJ LeMahieu, the Rockies will have two All-Stars for the first time since 3B Jeff Cirillo and 1B Todd Helton were selected in 2000. . . . Rockies SS Tulowitzki extended his career-high hitting streak to 19 games and has reached base in a career-high 34 consecutive games. . . . Angels RHP Jered Weaver (left hip inflammation) threw on flat ground and is scheduled to throw a bullpen session Wednesday. He then will be evaluated to determine whether he needs a rehab start. . . . Interim Angels GM Bill Stoneman will be with the team in Seattle, where the team opens a four-game series Thursday. . . . OF Collin Cowgill (sprained right wrist) is at the Angels'facility in Tempe, Ariz., receiving treatment but is shut down for about another week.


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