Early offense leads Angels past A's in opener

Early offense leads Angels past A's in opener

OAKLAND -- A streaking Angels club remained in the win column Monday, claiming the first of a three-game series against the A's with a 10-7 victory at the Coliseum for their 10th win in their last 12 tries.

In doing so, they spoiled the Major League debut of right-hander Raul Alcantara, who was only around for three innings, following an erratic display that largely defined his five-run outing.

Kole Calhoun homered for Los Angeles, and Albert Pujols finished with two hits and as many RBIs, notching a two-run double in a three-run fourth inning that pushed the Angels' lead to six runs.

Pujols' two-run double

The A's responded with three of their own runs in the bottom half of the fourth, highlighted by Joey Wendle's first career RBI, and they would fight to within one run by the end of the seventh, when Khris Davis smashed his 35th home run. The Angels tacked on two runs in the ninth, with help from two Oakland errors.

Angels starter Jered Weaver pitched just four innings and was on the hook for five runs on four hits, including a two-run homer to Danny Valencia in the first.


Rough beginnings: Alcantara, who pitched to a 1.18 ERA in eight starts with Triple-A Nashville, endured a shaky start to his big league career. Unable to harness his command, the right-hander hit three batters in the opening frame and walked another, contributing to a three-run inning that also included three hits. Alcantara kept the damage to one run in each of his final two innings, before he was pulled after just 61 pitches, forcing the A's to summon Tuesday's scheduled starter, Ross Detwiler for the fourth.

"You hit a guy, then you hit another guy, you just get a little bit spooked, but toward the end of his outing, we saw the stuff that we think we're going to see, and he got better as he went along," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "But sometimes, nerves hit you in your first outing, especially when a couple of things transpire." More >

A's turn two

Pujols keeps mashing: Pujols delivered a two-run double with one out in the fourth, extending the Angels lead to 7-2 and recording his 110th RBI. It was his 599th career double, two shy of Barry Bonds for 15th place all-time. More >

Doolittle back in action: A's left-hander Sean Doolittle returned to the mound for the first time since June 25, also against the Angels, and struck out two batters in his first appearance off the disabled list. Doolittle, who was sidelined by a left shoulder injury for more than two months, worked around one base hit in the seventh frame, throwing 21 pitches.

"I felt really good about it. I was very pleased with the way the ball was coming out and the way I felt mechanically," Doolittle said. "That's the best I've felt throughout this whole process coming back."

Weaver's short day: His pitching line was nothing to cheer about, but that's not why he left the game after four innings. After getting hit in the right hip by a ball, Weaver said his leg went dead on him, and he couldn't push off his back foot.

"It was like pitching on one leg," Weaver said. "I didn't have much command as it was, so it was better for someone else to come in."

"He was a little sore and it started to affect him by the end of the fourth inning," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.

Weaver gets shaken up

"We're all thinking about him. It's bigger than baseball. He has a family. It's scary for him, it's scary for us and it's scary for baseball in general." -- Angels center fielder Mike Trout, on Matt Shoemaker

Angels: Right-hander Ricky Nolasco will make his seventh start for the Angels and 28th of the season on Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. PT. He's coming off a shutout against the Cincinnati Reds last week in which he did not walk a batter. He's 2-1 with a 4.09 ERA in five games against the A's.

Athletics: Detwiler was originally scheduled to start Tuesday's 7:05 p.m. PT contest against the Angels at the Coliseum, but he was thrust into action in the fourth inning following Alcantara's three-inning outing Monday, forcing the A's to call on right-hander Zach Neal for the second game of this series.

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Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010. Follow her on Twitter @JaneMLB.

Rick Eymer is a contributor to MLB.com that covered the Angels on Monday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.