Sports

Archer strikes out 15, Rays top Angels

Anaheim, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Chris Archer continued to roll through opposing hitters with a career-high 15 strikeouts in the Tampa Bay Rays' 6-1 win over the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

Archer (6-4), who struck out a previous career high of 12 in a no-decision against Seattle his last time out, scattered six hits and allowed one run in eight innings of work.

"It all stems from fastball command," Archer said. "The last 10 days the command of the fastball has been better. I knew I struck out a lot of people but my focus was in the moment. I was happy to give the team a quality start."

Archer has recorded 35 strikeouts over his last three starts and tied James Shields for the club record for punchouts in a game.

Logan Forsythe homered to back Archer and Jake Elmore knocked in two runs for Tampa Bay, which has won three of its last four.

Los Angeles had its five-game winning streak halted.

Albert Pujols hit his 14th homer of the season and tied Jimmie Foxx for 17th on the all-time home run list.

C.J. Wilson (3-4) was dealt the loss after he yielded five runs over six innings with seven strikeouts.

"C.J. had better stuff than his line will show," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "He did a good job until the sixth inning when he lost his release point."

Tampa Bay Rays manager Kevin Cash made a questionable decision last week when he took his young ace out after eight scoreless innings against Seattle, only to have the bullpen lose it in the ninth. Cash did not have any such problems on Tuesday night.

Forsythe's sixth homer of the season brought in Joey Butler with two outs in the first to give the Rays a 2-0 lead.

Pujols then launched his sixth homer in the last six games in the fourth to cut the Angels' deficit to one.

Other than Pujols' long fly, Archer mowed down the Angels lineup through five innings. Archer struck out the side in the second and sat the first two hitters of the third down on strikes to keep Los Angeles off the board. He then added a pair of strikeouts, his ninth and 10th respectively, around a Kirk Nieuwenhuis groundout in the fifth.

Tampa Bay loaded the bases with consecutive two-out walks in the sixth and Elmore made Wilson pay for his inaccuracy with a humpback single into right that Kole Calhoun nearly caught to end the frame. Asdrubal Cabrera followed with an RBI single for a 5-1 lead.

Rene Rivera's RBI knock in the ninth accounted for the final margin.

Game Notes

Archer is the first in Rays' history to have back-to-back games with 12 or more strikeouts ... Next up for Pujols is Mickey Mantle with 536 career homers on the all-time list ... Angels reliever Edgar Ibarra struck out Brandon Guyer in the seventh for his first major league strikeout.