SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Rockies were hoping to see more from Jeff Hoffman, a young starter with high hopes, on Thursday. The Angels got exactly what they expected from Hector Santiago, an All-Star last season, in a 4-4 tie at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick.Santiago gave up four hits
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Rockies were hoping to see more from Jeff Hoffman, a young starter with high hopes, on Thursday. The Angels got exactly what they expected from Hector Santiago, an All-Star last season, in a 4-4 tie at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick.
Santiago gave up four hits in 4 1/3 strong innings. He walked two and struck out six in the 78-pitch outing. Hoffman was charged with four runs on eight hits in 2 2/3 innings. He walked two and struck out one.
"It was pretty good, all the pitches working. Didn't get through five, but pitched into the fifth, got to the pitch count," Santiago said. "Everything was working, ahead in the counts, breaking balls on even counts, was mixing it up pretty well."
The Angels wasted little time against Hoffman, rattling off four consecutive hits, including a two-run double by Johnny Giavotella, for an early 2-0 advantage in the first inning. They tacked on another run with two outs in the second on a RBI single by Cliff Pennington that scored Jett Bandy to extend the lead to 3-0. Bandy reached base on a long double to center field. Andrelton Simmons followed with a walk.
In the third, the Angels' Ji-Man Choi hit a one-out single and scored his team's fourth run on a double by Jefry Marte. Hoffman would not face another hitter and was replaced by Simon Castro.
"I think for the most part that I didn't get ahead and that contributed to a lot of the problems today," Hoffman said. "Usually, I'm pretty good with batters and staying ahead, but today it just wasn't there."
The Rockies answered in the bottom half of the frame on a homer by Tom Murphy to cut the Angels' lead to 4-1. The Rockies rallied for three runs in the eighth -- two on a triple by Joey Wong -- to tie the game at 4.
"It was a good pitch. We tried to go up, middle-up, to get him to lay off of it, make it an effective pitch, throw one up in the zone and go down later and he just hit it up in the breeze," Santiago said of the Murphy home run. "I think it was just a little bit of an Arizona thing because I didn't think he got it all off the bat"
Jon Gray allowed three hits in four innings of relief for the Rockies. He struck out three.
Up next for Angels: A pair of split-squad games are on the Angels' schedule Friday. Presumed Opening Day starter Garrett Richards will take the ball at home in Tempe against the Rockies at 1:10 p.m. PT, while Matt Shoemaker gets the nod in the road tilt against the Royals at 1:05 p.m. PT. Mike Morin, Joe Smith and Cam Bedrosian are also on tap to pitch for the Angels, and Geovany Soto is also expected to return to the lineup.
Up next for Rockies: The Rockies will once again take on the Angels, this time at Tempe Diablo Stadium, on Friday at 2:10 p.m. MT. Antonio Senzatela will take the mound for the Rockies. The Angels will counter with Garrett Richards, who will make his third start of spring. Jordan Lyles is also scheduled to pitch for Colorado.
Jesse Sanchez is a national reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSanchezMLB.