Angels finally put it in high gear

Club hopes outburst lights offensive fuse

Angels finally put it in high gear

ARLINGTON -- The Angels' offense was finally starting to show signs of life over the last couple of days, putting together better at-bats and squaring a lot of balls up without much to show for it. Soon, they figured, those line drives would find holes and the lineup -- the same lineup that led the Majors in runs last season, with two notable exceptions -- would really get going.

They're hoping Wednesday's 10-run, 13-hit barrage at Globe Life Park was the start of something.

"It only takes that one at-bat to get people going," Mike Trout said after the Angels beat the Rangers, 10-2. "Just to get some confidence back, it helped. We were having great at-bats."

The Angels tied their season high in runs (six) in the top of the second, had 17 at-bats with runners in scoring position and raised their team batting average by 16 points, from .215 to .231.

Angels' six-run inning

"We have to hit better than we did in the first eight games," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "Hopefully, today was a start."

Through the first eight games, the offense consisted of Trout and little else. The superstar center fielder is batting .438 and has hit safely in all nine games, but the Angels entered Wednesday tied for 21st in the Majors in runs scored.

Finally, Trout got some help.

The three hitters behind him -- Albert Pujols, Matt Joyce and David Freese -- combined to go 6-for-12 with six RBIs against Anthony Ranaudo and the Rangers' bullpen.

Pujols entered with a .148 batting average and felt "a little jumpy" on Wednesday, but thinks he's close to getting right again. Joyce entered with a .185 batting average and believes his first multi-hit game with the Angels will relieve some stress.

Joyce on today's win

"It just takes a little bit of pressure off me and a little weight off my shoulders," Joyce said after going 2-for-3 with a double. "I was trying a little too hard, defensively and at the plate."

The Angels no longer have Howie Kendrick and have no idea if they'll ever have Josh Hamilton, but they talked throughout spring about their belief that they still have a high-powered offense.

Wednesday provided a necessary reminder.

"Obviously, you're missing Josh and you're missing Howie, but we can't think about the past," Pujols said. "We have to think about what we have. We had a great spring, and I know what we're capable of doing. The main thing is to be healthy right now, and we'll see what happens after that."

Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.