Anaheim, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Albert Pujols knocked in the game-winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning to help the Los Angeles Angels to a 4-3 win over the San Diego Padres on Monday.
The Angels led 3-0 before a three-run top of the seventh knotted the score at 3-3. Joe Smith (1-1) pitched a 1-2-3 top of the ninth, setting the stage for a walk-off Angels win.
"I was just looking for something to hit," said Pujols. "The third time around I came through."
Marc Krauss drew a one-out walk against Kevin Quackenbush (1-1). Collin Cowgill replaced him at first base and moved to third on Johnny Giavotella's single to center.
San Diego went to closer Craig Kimbrel to try and get out of the jam, but the flamethrower wasn't up to the task. After striking out Erick Aybar on three pitches for the second out and walking Mike Trout intentionally, Pujols ripped a 1-0 offering into left field.
"It was a tough decision to pitch to Mike or Albert," Padres manager Bud Black said. "Pick your poison. I went with what I thought was a good matchup. It didn't work out for us."
The Angels were in complete control throughout most of the game, manufacturing a run in three different innings while starter Jered Weaver kept San Diego's bats quiet.
Matt Joyce doubled with two outs in the second inning, moved to third on a passed ball and scored when Carlos Perez beat out an infield single.
Joyce padded the lead with an RBI single in the fourth inning, and Aybar scampered home on a wild pitch in the fifth.
Meanwhile, Weaver faced the minimum through three and kept the Padres off the scoreboard until the seventh inning, when Will Middlebrooks reached on an infield single around a pair of ground outs.
Weaver departed with two outs and got betrayed by his bullpen. Jose Alvarez came on and walked Jedd Gyorko, setting up Yangervis Solarte's RBI double. Will Venable tied the game at 3-3 with one swing of the bat, singling in both runners.
Weaver was charged with just one run while striking out seven in 6 2/3 innings. His counterpart, Tyson Ross, also fanned seven and allowed three runs -- two earned -- on 10 hits over six frames.
The Angels improved to 7-2 in their last nine home games. This kicked off a 10-game homestand ... San Diego fell to 2-8 in its last 10 games ... The Angels outhit San Diego, 12-9.