DETROIT (AP) — Albert Pujols doubled, and the next three batters hit singles. Then there were a couple walks, some poor Detroit fielding — and by the time the inning ended, the Los Angeles Angels had scored eight runs.
“All I could do was clap and high-five,” said C.J. Wilson, the Los Angeles starter who was the beneficiary of that offensive outburst. “And be stoked for my teammates that they scored that many runs.”
J.B. Shuck had three hits and a career-high four RBIs, and the Angels routed the Tigers again, 14-8 on Tuesday night. Los Angeles has won seven straight against Detroit by a combined score of 48-17.
Wilson (7-5) allowed five runs and seven hits in five innings, and the Angels took advantage of six Detroit errors on a rainy night.
“It was just an ugly night for us. Obviously, they hit the ball all over the place and we didn’t make some plays,” Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. “We actually swung the bats halfway decent, but we just played an ugly game. We pitched and played an ugly game.”
Miguel Cabrera hit a two-run homer in the third for the Tigers, but he also made two errors.
Rick Porcello (4-5) gave up seven runs and 10 hits in 4 1-3 innings. The Angels scored nine runs off him in two-thirds of an inning in April. This start looked better at first, but Los Angeles broke through in a big way in the fifth.
The game was tied at 2 when Pujols hit a one-out double in the fifth. Mark Trumbo followed with a single, and Howie Kendrick’s single gave the Angels the lead.
They weren’t done. Josh Hamilton’s single brought home another run — Torii Hunter’s throw might have been in time, but catcher Bryan Holaday couldn’t handle it on the bounce — and with runners on second and third, Alberto Callaspo was intentionally walked.
Darin Downs relieved Porcello and allowed all three inherited runners to score. He walked Hank Conger to force in a run, and Erick Aybar’s sacrifice fly made it 6-2. Shuck followed with an RBI single, and a single by Mike Trout brought home another run.
Pujols’ RBI single made it 9-2 and chased Downs. Evan Reed came on and immediately made a wild pickoff throw to first for an error, allowing one more run to come home.
The Angels snapped a three-game losing streak with their highest-scoring game of the season. It was also the most runs allowed by the Tigers.
Los Angeles is still 10 games out of first place in the AL West.
“We need to do everything right to get to where we need to get — to be in the race,” Wilson said. “We need to get lucky. We’re so far back right now, it’s not even scoreboard watching. We have to really pull together and get the most out of ourselves.”
Hamilton had three hits after entering the night in an 0-for-15 slump. He also scored three runs.
Cabrera beat out Trout last year for AL MVP, and each star made his presence felt in the third. Trout drove in the game’s first run with a single, and Cabrera answered with an opposite-field homer, his 21st.
Wilson threw seven scoreless innings in his previous start. He wasn’t as sharp Tuesday, allowing three runs in the fifth immediately after his teammates had given him a 10-2 lead.
Shuck made it 11-5 with a sacrifice fly in the seventh, scoring Aybar, who had walked, stole second and advanced to third on a throwing error by Holaday.
Los Angeles tacked on three more runs in the eighth on an RBI single by Aybar and a two-run single by Shuck. Cabrera made both his errors that inning.
It was the first time all season a team has made more than four errors.
Detroit remains 3 1/2 games ahead of second-place Cleveland in the AL Central.
It was raining for much of the second half of the game, and hardly any fans were left at the end. The game took 4 hours, 3 minutes.
Although the outcome wasn’t in much doubt, the Angels still struggled to get the final few outs. Ramon Santiago, who was hitting .163 and had entered as a replacement for Cabrera, drew a bases-loaded walk in the ninth to make it 14-7.
A streak of lightning was visible in the distance when Hamilton caught Don Kelly’s sacrifice fly for the second out, and Victor Martinez grounded out to end it.
“It maybe took a little bit longer, but we did what we had to,” Shuck said. “It was kind of cool — some pretty cool lightning in the background to watch.”