DENVER – It started innocently enough as the Angels created some fun trivia, becoming the first team in nearly three years to hit back-to-back homers on three pitches.
But it got madder and crazier from there for the Angels, who simply couldn’t stop scoring against the Rockies. The three homers ignited 13 consecutive third innings, and the Angels added an eight-run fourth in a wild 25-1 win at Coors Field on Saturday that set the club record for both runs and strikeouts (28) in a single game. . The 24-run margin of victory was the largest in franchise history and the third-largest by any club since 1900.
“We’ve been aggressive, we attack pitches in the area and the runs get infectious at times,” said manager Phil Nevin. “To be honest, we found some glitches, but then the big hits helped us add more.”
His previous high in home runs was 24 against the Blue Jays in a 24-2 win on August 25, 1979, while his previous high in strikeouts was 26, which they accomplished twice. He also achieved a franchise-record 13 third-place finishers in both 1997 and 1978. They also tied a club record with four batters in the frame.
The Angels scored 23 points over their first four innings, which was the third most in MLB history, behind only the Cubs (25) on August 25, 1922, and the Pirates (24) on June 6, 1894. Two consecutive innings runs is tied for the most in MLB history with These pirates of 1894.
But Nevin tried to stay away from gloating about the historic performance.
“I’m glad we came out swinging the bat and all, but it got to a place where you don’t want to disrespect the game,” said Nevin. “Buddy Black and the people in there are the ones I care about, so you don’t want him to get out of control.”
Notable performances included Mickey Moniak and Hunter Renfro, who both went 5-for-5. Moniak hit three doubles and a homer to tie the franchise record with four extra base hits in a game. Moniak fell with a triple on the course, literally nearly falling his way to second on a potential triple in the sixth that had his teammates laughing in the dugout.
“I got a little excited,” Moniac said with a smile. “I’m not sure if I snagged my bag or my cleats. Either way, that’s what it is. At least I’m healthy.”
Star Mike Trout kicked off the epic third period with a solo blast on a 1-0 right-hander fastball from Chase Anderson to open the frame, before Brandon Drury followed up with a shot of his own on a first-rate cutter.
Then Matt Theis jumped all over Dean’s first pitch curve to give the Angels back-to-back home runs for the second time this season.
Nevin said he believes the homeowners paid the Angels, such as the boost the club received from the trading of Eduardo Escobar on Friday and Mike Moustakas on Saturday.
“When adults get into something like that, it shoots up the club,” Nevin said. “That room knows our general manager is still working and brings pieces in to help us out when we lose pieces right away. It shows we’re in this thing and we’re all in it together.”
It sparked a 13-run home run for the Angels, as Ward and Otani later added RBI singles. Drury also supplied a two-run single and Renfroe brought in three runs with a double. Escobar followed with an RBI single before Moniac ripped a two-run homer to give the Angels a 15–0 lead.
“I don’t think I’ve ever been a part of something like that,” Moniak said. “It was one after another, and the quality of the racquets was amazing.”
The four visitors in the inning tied the Angels franchise record, matching a feat also performed on May 28, 2000, in Kansas City. David Fletcher grounded out the third inning, an inning that also saw the Angels rack up 10 hits and three walks.
The Angels backed him up with an eight-run fourth, tied with a three-run homer by Fletcher, before he tackled another run in the sixth and one more in the eighth. Fletcher started scoring on his own in the second period.
Perhaps lost in the dribble, right-hander Griffin Canning threw six scoreless innings with seven strikeouts, and the only run the Angels allowed on the night was a solo homer by Brenton Doyle off lefty Colton Ingram in the eighth.
“The highlight of the night for me was how Griffin threw the ball,” said Nevin. “He played a game, and they can get away with you, too.”
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