Don't look now, but the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are slowly climbing their way out of the basement in the American League West.
The Halos were victorious Friday night, defeating the Mariners 6-4 in the second test game of a four-game series. Their third straight win, though, didn't come without some dramatics.
Down 4-3 in the ninth inning, Mark Trumbo led off with a single, which was followed up by a Alberto Callaspo walk. Erik Aybar then tied the game by reaching on a Brandon League error. An intentional walk of Kole Calhoun set up pitch-hitter Howie Kendrick for the game-winning two-run single.
Albert Pujols continued to put his early season slump behind him after belting a three-run home run in the sixth inning. Pujols now sits with six long balls on the season after hitting none in the month of April.
Though Ervin Santana struggled, allowing four earned runs on four hits and a season-high seven walks, Jason Isringhausen earned the win by pitching a scoreless eighth inning. Scott Downs pitched a perfect ninth for his fourth save.
For Seattle, Justin Smoak was a one-man wrecking crew, going 2-for-4 with a home run and four RBI.
Blake Beavan was impressive in a no-decision, going seven innings allowing five hits and three runs. League (0-4) earned the loss after the ninth inning meltdown, and he now has more blown saves (3) than saves (2) since April 30.
The Mariners look for a quick turnaround after the heartbreaking loss, and luckily for them they have their stopper ready to take the hill in Felix Hernandez.
King Felix dominated the potent Texas Rangers lineup on Monday night, going eight innings while allowing six hits and one earned run. He also struck out seven and walked just two, out-dueling fellow AL West pitching sensation Yu Darvish.
"Attack and just throw strikes," said Hernandez of his game plan against the Rangers. "If you get behind against this lineup, it's a problem."
The win came on the heels of two uncharacteristically poor starts for Hernandez, who allowed 21 hits and 10 earned runs over back-to-back losses to the Yankees and the Indians.
Monday's performance was more in line for Hernandez's season so far, as he has now pitched eight innings in five of his 10 starts and has allowed one earned run or fewer in six of those.
Hernandez has not been as dominant against the Angels in his career, going 6-9 with a 3.67 ERA in 25 career starts against Los Angeles, who sends Jerome Williams to the mound tonight.
Williams has been more than the Angels could have asked for as the fifth starter this season, giving the Halos six quality starts in seven tries while registering a 4-2 record with a 3.74 ERA.
Williams wasn't great his last time out, allowing five hits and five walks in 6 1/3 innings, but he managed to escape allowing just two earned runs. Despite his strong damage control, Williams came out the hard-luck loser on Monday, as the Athletics beat the Angels 2-1.
The journeyman right-hander has been fantastic in two career starts against the Mariners, going 2-0 with a 3.00 ERA, allowing just eight hits in 15 innings pitched.