Anaheim, CA – Mark Trumbo clubbed a two-run homer and Garrett Richards spun seven strong innings, as the LA Angels of Anaheim downed the Toronto Blue Jays, 8-2, Thursday in the opener of a four-game series at Angel Stadium.
J.B. Shuck finished with three RBI, while Josh Hamilton and Howie Kendrick each knocked in a run for the Angels, who were coming off three straight walk- off losses to the Texas Rangers.
With the offense providing plenty of run support, Richards (3-4) did his part by limiting the Blue Jays to two runs on four hits and a pair of walks while striking out four to notch the victory.
"I threw strikes down in the zone," Richards said of his outing. "When the guys put up runs early, it makes my job easier."
The struggles continued for Toronto starter Josh Johnson (1-8), who surrendered seven runs -- six earned -- on 10 hits and two walks over 2 1/3 frames to absorb his six straight loss.
"Josh is searching for answers," Toronto manager John Gibbons said of his starter. "We were hoping to get four or five innings. He's a guy you root for. He's rock bottom right now. The results are not there."
Colby Rasmus scored once and registered two of the six hits for the Blue Jays, who had won five of seven coming into the contest.
The Angels jumped on Johnson for four runs in the first. Kole Calhoun led off with a single to left before Johnson got Mike Trout to line out and Hamilton to ground into a fielder's choice that left Calhoun on second with two outs.
Kendrick kept the frame alive with a run-scoring single to right before Trumbo launched his 24th homer of the season into left field to make it 3-0.
"It was a hanging breaking ball and I didn't miss it," Trumbo said of his homer. "It was nice to jump on them early."
Erick Aybar followed with a single and stole second before a walk to Chris Nelson preceded Shuck's RBI base hit to center for a 4-0 lead.
LA added a run in the second when Calhoun slapped a leadoff single, stole second and moved to third when catcher J.P. Arencibia's throw sailed into center field. Hamilton followed with a sacrifice fly to left to score Calhoun.
The Angels opened the third with three consecutive singles to push the margin to 6-0 before Shuck's sac fly to center made it 7-0.
Toronto finally cracked the scoreboard in the fifth when Adam Lind worked a leadoff walk and Rasmus followed with a double to right. Rasmus moved to third on Calhoun's fielding error before scoring on a Maicer Izturis groundout to bring the Jays within 7-2.
Nelson tripled to center to start the seventh and Shuck followed with a sac fly to center to account for the final margin.
Johnson fell to 0-5 in six road starts this season ... Prior to the game, the Blue Jays activated pitcher Sergio Santos from the 60-day disabled list and placed pitcher Dustin McGowan on the 15-day DL. Santos allowed one run on one hit over two innings of relief work ... Every Angel registered either an RBI or a hit except for Trout, who went 0-for-3 with a pair of walks ... Toronto left fielder Melky Cabrera exited the contest in the fourth inning. He was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left knee after the game. The Blue Jays recalled pitcher Neil Wagner from Triple-A Buffalo to replace Cabrera.