Seeking sweep, Rangers done in by errors
ANAHEIM -- The Rangers and the Angels had a pretty good battle going for five innings. Then, manager Jeff Banister said, "We shot ourselves in the foot."
When you do that against the Angels, it inevitably means Mike Trout and Albert Pujols are going to be in position to do serious damage.
"You can't continue to flip their lineup over and give them opportunities with runners on base," Banister said after the 13-7 loss. "If you do that, [Trout and Pujols] will continue to hurt you."
That's what happened Sunday afternoon as Trout took advantage of some mistakes with a sixth-inning grand slam that broke the game open.
The Rangers still finished 5-4 on their nine-game trip to start the second half, including two of three from the front-running Angels. Now they open a 10-game homestand against the Yankees, Giants and Astros. Those are three serious contenders, and the Rangers have lost 10 of their last 11 games at home.
"I think we are on an upward trend," Banister said. "We need to continue that process, get home and do what we have talked about all year, winning at home."
Rangers starter Nick Martinez remains winless in his past six starts, allowing four runs in five-plus innings. He gave up six hits, including two solo home runs, walked three and struck out five.
"I felt good overall, but I had some command issues," Martinez said. "I had to make some adjustments pitching from behind. I was able to do that in some situations, and in some situations, I didn't get it done."
Martinez's last walk hurt the most. The Angels led, 3-2, going into the sixth when Martinez walked Conor Gillaspie to lead off the inning.
"That put a fork in me," Martinez said. "I didn't feel fatigued, I felt great. It was more of a mental mistake than a physical mistake."
After reliever Anthony Bass replaced Martinez, Carlos Perez dropped a sacrifice bunt. Bass fielded it, but bounced his throw to first and it skipped past Rougned Odor for an error.
Daniel Robertson's infield single off Bass' leg loaded the bases as the other runners couldn't advance. Johnny Giavotella's single drove in one run to make it 4-2 and left-hander Sam Freeman entered the game to strike out Kole Calhoun for the first out of the inning.
Banister then brought in right-hander Spencer Pattton to face Trout. The battle went to a full count. Trout then fouled off two pitches before hitting a fastball over the right-center wall for a grand slam.
"Obviously I am trying to get out of there with minimal damage and it didn't happen," Patton said. "Poor pitch selection and I definitely didn't hit my spots. He had seen five fastballs in a row. I was caught between that and a slider and my ego got the better of me."