Pujols homers twice in 3rd inning, Angels beat Brewers 15-7
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Mike Scioscia liked the two mammoth home runs Albert Pujols hit in the third inning against Milwaukee. But he also liked the veteran slugger’s first at-bat, a two-out, RBI single to the opposite field.
“It’s great to see him hitting the ball to right field with a guy in scoring position, which is what he does when he’s on,” the Angels manager said after Pujols sent Los Angeles past the Milwaukee Brewers 15-7 on Saturday.
After his first-inning single scored the streaking Yunel Escobar, Pujols led off the third against Wily Peralta and homered onto the berm in left-center. The Angels went on to bat around, and Pujols faced Peralta again with a man on and two out.
This time, on the first pitch, Pujols cleared the hedge behind the lawn area in left and capped an eight-run inning. Pujols had one spring homer entering Saturday.
“He got two pitches up and just killed them,” Scioscia said.
Escobar went 4 for 4, extending his consecutive hit streak to seven. The Angels’ new third baseman is batting .471 and has yet to strike out in Cactus League play.
Angels outfielder Daniel Nava was hit on top of the helmet by a fastball from Peralta in the second inning. Nava left the game but the Angels said he did not show any concussion symptoms.
Brewers: Peralta left after Pujols’ second homer. He went 2 2/3 innings, giving up 11 hits and 10 runs, seven of them earned.
“Tough day,” Peralta said. “I had a hard time executing pitches, everything was up in the zone.”
After four starts this spring, Peralta has given up 23 hits in 10 innings and has an ERA of 11.70.
“The bullpen (sessions) have been great. I think when the season starts I’m going to be fine,” he said.
Angels: Yunesky Maya made his first start after six relief innings. He didn’t fare as well this time, though four of the five runs against him were unearned.
Maya allowed five hits and walked four after issuing no passes in any of his previous outings. The Cuban last pitched in the majors for Washington in 2013.
The Brewers sent seven players to minor league camp Saturday: Pitchers Zach Davies, Junior Guerra, Hiram Burgos and Daniel Tillman, catcher Adam Weisenberger, first baseman Andy Wilkins and infielder Garin Cecchini.
Brewers: Gennett (shoulder), who returned to action as a DH on Thursday, played second base for the first time this spring. “It’s 100 percent now,” Gennett said after coming out of the game after going 1 for 4 with an RBI and a run scored. He said he’ll be off Sunday and then return to a normal schedule.
STANDING ROOM ONLY
Saturday’s crowd of 9,620 was the third sellout of the spring at Tempe Diablo Stadium.
Brewers: Jimmy Nelson goes against the Dodgers in Maryvale.
Angels: Andrew Heaney will face the Rangers in Surprise while Jered Weaver (neck) will work in a minor league game in Tempe.