Pujols' two HRs spark Angels' big win
Hits two-run blast, solo shot; Trumbo, Bourjos go deep
ARLINGTON -- Jered Weaver could see it coming. Early Saturday at Rangers Ballpark, the ace turned visionary in response to a question about a slumbering Angels offense.
"It's bound to get going sooner or later -- sooner than later," Weaver said. "There are too many talented guys on this team for something good not to happen."
In game five, the Angels found their missing mojo. They pounded four homers in dispatching the Rangers, 8-4, handing Tommy Hanson a victory in his American League debut.
A four-run, first-inning outburst featured homers by Albert Pujols and Mark Trumbo, with another blast coming from Pujols and one from Peter Bourjos.
"Look at our lineup up and down -- it speaks for itself," Pujols said. "It's a no-brainer we have a great ballclub. That doesn't mean they're going to hand a championship to you. You have to go out and perform. You have to win games and win series to have an opportunity to go to the postseason. Anything can happen there; you guys know."
Hanson yielded a pair of solo blasts to Mitch Moreland and Ian Kinsler in the third inning en route to the win with six solid innings in his Angels debut.
Rangers left-hander Matt Harrison, rocked for five runs on eight hits in five innings, fell to 0-2.
With only one hit in his first 14 at-bats, Pujols launched his first homer, a two-run shot to dead center following Erick Aybar's double, to get the Angels rolling. After a walk to Josh Hamilton, Harrison served a first-pitch fastball that Trumbo rocketed into the right-field seats for his first homer.
"When I'm driving the ball to right and right-center, it's a good sign," said Trumbo, who produced 29 and 32 homers in his first two Major League seasons.
Mike Trout, who singled twice and was robbed of a third hit by Kinsler, expressed awe over a batting practice show put on by Trumbo.
"Did you see it?" Trout asked. "He hit some unbelievable shots. One went over -- way over -- that Budweiser sign [in left-center]. He was crushing balls."
Singles by Chris Iannetta and Bourjos (on a bunt) and Aybar's sacrifice fly created another run in the second. It could have been a big inning if not for Kinsler taking away a Trout hit at second base.
After yielding the solo homers to Moreland and Kinsler, Hanson left runners in scoring position in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings.
"Tommy did a great job," manager Mike Scioscia said. "In BP the ball was flying. We said, `Anything that gets up in the air was going out.' With those conditions, Tommy pitched a terrific game to get through six."
Rangers shortstop and No. 2 hitter Elvis Andrus was impressed with Hanson, who was acquired over the winter from the Braves in exchange for Jordan Walden.
"It's always tough facing someone for the first time," Andrus said. "He did a good job keeping the ball down. He rarely made a mistake up and he kept us off balance."
A strong relay throw by Andrus took a run away from the Angels in the fifth. Andrus cut down Howard Kendrick trying to score on Alberto Callaspo's double off the left-field wall.
Bourjos, in his second start of the season in center, unloaded his solo homer to left-center leading off the sixth against reliever Jason Frasor.
"We weren't swinging the bats terrible," Bourjos said. "We just didn't click on all cylinders. Today we did. You're going to have your ups and downs, but it's a lot of fun with this team. I know some fans were starting to panic and think of last April [when the Angels started 6-14], but it's a new year. There's a whole different vibe."
Following Bourjos' blast, Frasor served Pujols' second homer, to left-center. This was the 45th multi-homer game of Pujols' career and moved him past Stan Musial and Willie Stargell into 28th on the all-time home run list with 477.
David Murphy's RBI triple past a leaping Bourjos in center delivered Andrus after a leadoff single in the sixth. The Angels got the run back in the seventh when Trumbo lashed a double off the wall in left and scored on Iannetta's sacrifice fly.
Hanson, allowing six hits and three earned runs, struck out four without a walk before turning it over to the bullpen. Ernesto Frieri surrendered a home run to Nelson Cruz in the ninth.
Pujols was walked intentionally three times. Hamilton, 1-for-20 and getting booed at every opportunity by his former fans, was hitless with a walk hitting behind Pujols. He struck out to end the second and fourth innings after a Pujols intentional pass and flied out in the eighth.
"There are only five games into the season," Pujols said when asked about Hamilton's struggles. "Let the guy settle down and see a month from now."
Pujols is the fifth player in Angels history to be walked intentionally three times in a game. It happened twice to Vladimir Guerrero. It was the second time for Pujols, who was walked intentionally three times as a Cardinal in August 2010 at Washington.
"That's Pujols, man," Andrus said. "When he's on fire, you'd rather give him four balls than let him beat you. He's a great hitter, one of the best in history. When he's locked in, there's not much you can do."