Angels complete sweep of A’s
ANAHEIM – Torii Hunter’s two-out single drove home Jeff Mathis in the 11th inning, and the Los Angeles Angels wrapped up their home schedule with a 2-1 victory over the Oakland Athletics on Wednesday.
Los Angeles failed to score with the bases loaded and one out in both the ninth and 10th innings, but Mathis and Howie Kendrick singled in the 11th against Brad Ziegler (3-7). Hunter then lined a hit to center, ending a disappointing season at Angel Stadium with a fireworks celebration for the dethroned AL West champions.
Kendrick had three hits for the Angels, who will miss the postseason for the first time since 2006 and just the third time since their only World Series title in 2002. Their three-year reign atop the division officially ended last weekend when the Texas Rangers clinched the title in Oakland.
Rajai Davis had a run-scoring double for the A’s, who have lost six straight while falling behind Los Angeles into third place in the AL West.
Bobby Cassevah (1-2) pitched two scoreless innings of relief to earn his first major league victory in his 14th appearance for Los Angeles.
The Angels swept a series for the eighth time this season while preventing Oakland from winning the California clubs’ season series for the first time since 2003.
Anaheim native Bobby Cramer pitched three-hit ball into the seventh inning for the A’s in the 30-year-old rookie’s fourth major league start. He was cheered enthusiastically by his hometown fans in his first appearance at Angel Stadium, where the erstwhile substitute math teacher attended games while he was out of baseball four years ago.
Joel Pineiro allowed five hits over seven strong innings in the final start of his first season with the Angels. He won 10 games for Los Angeles despite missing nearly two months with a strained muscle in his side, returning for three consecutive solid starts in late September.
Mark Trumbo scored Los Angeles’ first run on Kendrick’s groundout in the third inning. Oakland evened it in the fifth when Chris Carter scored on Davis’ double.
Cramer spent nearly five months of this season in the Mexican League before returning to the A’s organization with Triple-A Sacramento last month. He won his first two major league starts earlier this month, and he battled Los Angeles’ lineup throughout a sweltering afternoon in Orange County.
A’s manager Bob Geren finally pulled Cramer after Erick Aybar’s two-out single on Cramer’s 118th pitch. When his fans above the Oakland dugout gave him a standing ovation, Cramer responded to his hometown crowd with a sweeping wave of his hat.
Reliever Boof Bonser narrowly escaped the jam, stranding two runners in scoring position. Los Angeles stranded eight runners in the final four innings before winning it.
Notes: The Angels won’t renew the contract of Eddie Bane, their director of scouting for the past seven seasons. … Carter’s fifth-inning single snapped an 0-for-38 slump on the road. … Los Angeles must win three of four in its season-ending series at Texas to avoid its first losing season since 2003.