ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Hanser Alberto put Baltimore ahead with a two-run single in the eighth inning and the Orioles set a major league record with multiple home runs in their 10th straight game in an 8-7 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday night.
Pedro Severino and Jonathan Villar homered for Baltimore, whose 1987 and 1996 teams were among the other five teams to have multiple homers in nine straight games. Baltimore has won seven of its last 10 games after falling 38 games below .500 following a loss to the Washington Nationals on July 16.
With the win, the Orioles moved within a victory Sunday of posting a four-game sweep of the Angels. The Orioles have not swept a series this season.
Baltimore almost had its chance at a sweep thwarted before one last Angels rally fell short. David Fletcher delivered an RBI single in the ninth inning for Los Angeles, but with the tying run at third base Mike Trout struck out and Justin Upton popped out against Baltimore right-hander Mychael Givens.
The Angels put on their own long-ball display. Mike Trout, Shohei Ohtani and Albert Pujols all hit homer.
Pujols set an individual home-run milestone. He hit his 100th career home run at Angel Stadium. He also has 100 at Busch Stadium in St. Louis and became the 12th player in major league history with 100 home runs at two ballparks. He is also just the third to do it in an American League and National League ballpark, joining Mark McGwire and Frank Robinson.
Villar’s home run in the sixth inning, his 13th of the season, gave the Orioles a 6-5 lead. But Pujols countered with a home run in the bottom of the sixth, barely clearing the short wall in the right-field corner. It was Pujols’ 16th of the season.
Both teams scored a pair of runs in the first inning. The Orioles have scored 27 runs in the three games in the series, while the Angels have scored 18.
Severino had a two-run single in the opening inning, while the Angels matched it on Trout’s two-run home run as the second Los Angeles batter of the game. The blast to deep left field was Trout’s American League-leading 34th of the season and his 12th in 16 games.
The Angels were right back at it in the second inning. Fletcher had a two-run double for a 4-2 lead. The Orioles moved back on top in the third on an RBI double by Renato Nunez and a two-run home run by Severino, giving him four RBIs in the first three innings.
The back-and-forth continued in the bottom of the third inning when Ohtani led off with a home run, his 15th and his first since July 7 against the Houston Astros.
Alberto’s two-run single in the eighth inning chased Angels’ reliever Ty Buttrey (6-5). Buttery recorded just one out while giving up two hits and two runs.
Orioles left-hander Richard Bleier (2-0) struck out one in a scoreless inning and picked up the victory. Givens got four outs for his ninth save.
Orioles: OF Dwight Smith Jr. left Saturday’s game in the third inning with left calf soreness. … OF/DH Mark Trumbo, on the 60-injured list after knee surgery, will take a break from his rehabilitation schedule following a recent setback. … LHP John Means, who was placed on the 10-day IL on Friday, will now get an MRI on his injured left biceps, with the Orioles calling it “procedural.”
Angels: RHP Noe Ramirez was placed on the 10-day IL with a viral infection, retroactive to Thursday, after initially believing he might have food poisoning. … RHP JC Ramirez, on the 60-day IL after undergoing Tommy John surgery last year, is expected to throw 20 pitches Sunday on a rehab assignment with Class A Inland Empire, and is expected to be activated onto the major league roster Tuesday, manager Brad Ausmus said.
Orioles: RHP Dylan Bundy (5-11), who has given up three home runs in nine at-bats to Albert Pujols and two home runs to Mike Trout in nine at-bats, will take the mound in Sunday’s series finale.
Angels: RHP Felix Pena (8-3) will pick up a bulk of the innings Sunday, with the club still undecided if he will start the game outright or if it will use an opener at the outset.
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