After dropping the first two games to the Rangers, Joe Saunders and the Angels them out on Sunday to get their 100th and final regular season win.
John Lackey was roughed up on Friday night, being tagged for a career-high 10 runs on 12 hits before being pulled in the third. The Rangers rallied for all 12 runs in the first four frames, including a seven-run second inning. The offense was held to just five hits and one run, an RBI-single by Vlad in the first. The tough loss was followed by news that the Angels clinched home field advantage for the entire playoffs, with the Rays losing that night.
The offense fared a little better on Saturday, touching home four times on nine hits, but Ervin Santana struggled, giving up eight runs on ten hits. Mark Teixeira knocked in a run with a sac fly in the first before the Rangers took the lead with three runs in the second off two homeruns. The Angels were then shut out until the sixth when Reggie Willits scored on Morales’ RBI-groundout. They had another chance with the bases loaded in the seventh, but could only manage to score one run, on Matthew Brown’s RBI-single. Bobby Wilson then drove a run in in the ninth for his first career RBI. Santana was lifted with two outs in the sixth to keep his win total at 16 for the year.
The Angels finished off the 2008 regular season with a 7-0 shutout on Sunday, and now have two days off before hosting the Red Sox for the ALDS on Wednesday. Joe Saunders picked up his 17th win after tossing six shutout innings, holding the Rangers to two hits with nine K’s. The offense knocked in seven runs on twelve hits, with Napoli leading with 3 hits and 4 RBI. He drove an RBI-double in the second before hitting a solo homerun in the fifth. The Angels then rallied for three runs in the sixth, with an RBI-single by Matthews Jr. before Napoli drove a two-run double. The then added two more in the eighth, with Morales getting a walk with the bases loaded to cap off the scoring.
The opening game of the playoffs will be a matchup of John Lackey and Jon Lester on Wednesday.
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