BOSTON -- The Angels broke out of a prolonged slump with their most impressive display of offense in more than a decade while walloping the Red Sox, 21-2, on Saturday night at Fenway Park.It marked the first time the Angels have scored as many as 20 runs in a game
BOSTON -- The Angels broke out of a prolonged slump with their most impressive display of offense in more than a decade while walloping the Red Sox, 21-2, on Saturday night at Fenway Park.
It marked the first time the Angels have scored as many as 20 runs in a game since Aug. 25, 2004. Meanwhile, the Red Sox gave up that many for the first time since Aug. 31, 2012.
"It was a lot of fun," said Angels manager Mike Scioscia, his team 15 games below .500 at the halfway point. "It comes at a good time, just to hopefully get a little momentum going. Hopefully we'll carry it over into [Sunday], but it's a tremendous offensive night, to say the least."
C.J. Cron (6-for-6, two homers, five runs, five RBIs), Carlos Perez (5-for-6, homer, two doubles, six RBIs) and Albert Pujols (2-for-5, two-run homer, five RBIs) led the amazing onslaught. It was the second time in Angels history two players have had five hits or more in a game, as Cron and Perez joined Randy Velarde and Mo Vaughn (June 24, 1999).
Had Los Angeles really lost four in a row and nine of 10 entering this one? It was hard to believe it the way the visitors belted the ball around and out of Fenway. The barrage included an 11-run seventh.
"That's awesome, man," said Angels starter Hector Santiago, who allowed only an unearned run in six innings. "I don't think we've had a game like that ever."
Clay Buchholz (3-9, 5.91 ERA) had another tough start, giving up seven hits and six runs (three earned) over 4 1/3 innings. It was the eighth loss in the last 12 games for the Red Sox, who got three hits and a home run from leadoff hitter Mookie Betts.
"Honestly, we're embarrassed by tonight's ballgame," said Red Sox manager John Farrell. "There's really no other way to put it. We got kicked around the ballpark tonight and we need to put this one behind us, come back with an opportunity to win the series [Sunday}."
• Farrell 'embarrassed' by Sox's performance
The Red Sox called on outfielder Ryan LaMarre to pitch the ninth, and he worked a scoreless frame while allowing two hits.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Dropping an 11 spot: The Angels scored 11 -- yes, 11! -- runs in the top of the seventh, an inning in which 14 men came to bat. Perez and Andrelton Simmons hit back-to-back RBI singles, Kole Calhoun hit a two-run single, Pujols scorched a three-run double, and Cron and Perez each came up with two-run homers. It was the same number the Angels scored on the four-game losing streak they rode heading in, and it marked their first 11-run inning since May 12, 1997. More >
"It's definitely a special night," Calhoun said. "Put up 11 in an inning, build a rally and keep it going from literally all throughout the lineup -- that's what we've got to do. Obviously not in that fashion, but we have to get contributions from everybody and not feel like it's got to be one guy. That was the definition tonight."
Buchholz again struggles early: Buchholz's most recurring problem this season has been his inability to hold down the opposition early. The righty gave up a two-run homer to Pujols in the first inning and another run in the second. Buchholz has given up 15 runs in the first inning over his 13 starts.
"Hall of Fame hitter," Buchholz said. "You've got to make pitches to him. It was either that or a curveball. In hindsight, I throw a curveball right there and if I walk him, I walk him. I just didn't get it where I wanted it to be." More >
Dynamic duo: Cron and Perez combined to go 11-for-12 with three home runs, 11 RBIs and seven runs scored. Cron, who hit his first career grand slam Friday, singled in the first, homered in the fourth, hit a two-run single in the fifth, cranked out two more hits in the seventh and lofted a ball off the top of the Green Monster in the ninth. Perez, who entered batting .159 since the start of June, singled in the second, doubled in the fourth, hit a three-run double in the fifth, got two hits in the seventh and lined out in the ninth. More >
Defense shoddy for Red Sox: The Red Sox made a season-high of four errors in this one, leading to seven unearned runs. Third baseman Travis Shaw made two errors while shortstop Xander Bogaerts and left fielder Bryce Brentz each made one.
"We gave far too many outs away tonight where we've been I think pretty solid on the infield [this season]," said Farrell. "It's been very steady throughout the better portion of this season to date. Tonight was not a case of that. When I say that we're embarrassed by tonight's ballgame, that's part of it."
"He's tired, for sure. He carried us through the whole game." -- Santiago, on the Rally Monkey, which was emblazoned on his cleats during the 21-run night
"I haven't talked to our psychiatrist yet, but my confidence is all right. I'm good. It's a matter of making pitches in situations, and there was a couple times I didn't make them tonight and paid for it." -- Buchholz, when asked if his problems are mental or physical
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Cron became the fifth player in Major League history with six hits, five runs and five runs in one night, joining Walker Cooper (1949), Cal Ripken ('99), Edgardo Alfonzo ('99) and Shawn Green (2002).
Pujols joined Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, Barry Bonds, Frank Robinson, Alex Rodriguez, Ken Griffey Jr. and Babe Ruth as the only players to amass 575 home runs and 1,750 RBIs.
Mike Trout -- who leads Major League position players in FanGraphs Wins Above Replacement and entered with a .340 batting average since the start of June -- didn't drive in any of the Angels' 21 runs.
Saturday marked the first time the Angels had fielded their defensive lineup, including their designated hitter, since Opening Day. Yunel Escobar, Daniel Nava and Simmons all spent significant time tending to injuries.
In the first, Betts hit a drive to center and a fan reached over and knocked it back into play before it could hit the top of the wall. Betts motored into third with what was originally ruled a triple. But Scioscia -- who was steaming mad when he didn't get a fan interference call in the ninth Friday -- called for a challenge. This time, after a review of three minutes and 46 seconds, the call was overturned to interference and Betts was placed at second.
In the fifth, Pujols hit a grounder to Shaw, who threw high to Dustin Pedroia at second looking for the double play. Trout slid hard into second and was safe while Pedroia quickly shot a bullet to first. Pujols was called safe, but Farrell challenged. After an official replay review, the call on the field stood.
Angels:Matt Shoemaker hopes to keep his dominant run going when he takes the ball for Sunday's rubber game at Fenway Park, with first pitch set for 10:35 a.m. PT. Shoemaker has a 1.87 ERA over his last eight starts, striking out 68 and walking only five in 57 2/3 innings. But he somehow has only one win in that stretch.
Red Sox:Sean O'Sullivan will get the call from Triple-A Pawtucket to make his third start for the Red Sox this season Sunday at 1:35 p.m. ET. The righty will take the rotation spot vacated by Eduardo Rodriguez, who was optioned earlier in the week.
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Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.
Alden Gonzalez has covered the Angels for MLB.com since 2012. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook, and listen to his podcast.