Halos offer ample support in Weaver's 16th win

Halos offer ample support in Weaver's 16th win

Halos offer ample support in Weaver's 16th win
BOSTON -- The Angels' rotation is showing signs of turning things around.

Jered Weaver bounced back from a rough outing, and the Angels overcame an injury to Albert Pujols to beat the Red Sox, 7-3, on Wednesday night.

Weaver gave the Halos their second quality start in as many games, stifling the Boston bats over seven solid innings. He rebounded from the worst start in his career on Friday, when he gave up nine runs in three innings.

"It was just one of those days where the stars weren't aligned last start," Weaver said. "It's going to happen, and as a starter you need to realize that and can't dwell on it too much. Me and [catcher] Chris [Iannetta] got back on the same page and the offense gave me some runs early."

The Angels collected 15 hits to win their second straight game at Fenway Park. After a disappointing 3-7 homestand, the club has found success on the road. The Angels have won their last four games in Boston.

"We could easily fold up and not play our best ball coming in here, and the guys are motivated and know what it takes toward the end of the stretch to get back to where we want to be," said Weaver, who won his sixth straight road start. "It's nice that we were able to bounce back after a rough homestand and we've played really good baseball here the last two games."

Weaver struck out five against one walk to win for the first time in three starts. It was his 16th victory of the season, tying him with the Rays' David Price for the American League lead. Weaver scattered seven hits and allowed two runs and was in control from the start, commanding of all his pitches.

The Angels' rotation entered Wednesday's game with a 6.56 ERA in August, the worst mark in the Majors. But Ervin Santana tossed 6 1/3 innings of two-run ball on Tuesday and Weaver followed suit. The Angels hope the result won't change as they go for a sweep on Thursday behind C.J. Wilson, who is winless in his last 10 starts.

"When something goes in a positive direction, tomorrow C.J. wants to take that baton and pass it on to the next guy in good shape," Los Angeles manager Mike Scioscia said. "These guys know how important they are to us and hopefully they keep it going."

Pujols was removed from the game in the bottom of the fourth due to tightness in his right calf with the Angels leading, 4-0. The slugger led off the top of the frame with a double, moved to third on a groundout and then limped home on a single by Mark Trumbo.

"I'm going to ice it down tonight and do other stuff and see how it goes," said Pujols, who will have an MRI on Thursday. "It's pretty sore so hopefully just sore and [Thursday] hopefully I feel better and play. If not, I'll just take a day [off]."

The Red Sox finally mounted something against Weaver in the fourth. The right-hander allowed four straight hits with two outs, including a pair of RBI doubles that trimmed the Angels lead to 4-2. But he regrouped and retired the next nine batters he faced.

"He was working both sides of the plate and didn't miss over the middle a lot," Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia said. "He mixed in the changeup, just making sure he's staying out of the middle of the plate."

The Angels stretched their lead to 7-2 with a three-run sixth. Howie Kendrick lined a homer into the seats above the Green Monster, his seventh on the season. Torii Hunter added a two-run single with the bases loaded and two outs.

Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz was relieved after allowing seven runs on a career-high-tying 12 hits in 5 1/3 innings. It was his first loss since July 14, a span of seven starts.

At the bottom of the lineup, Maicer Izturis, Erick Aybar and Iannetta combined to go 8-for-12 with four runs and two RBIs.

"I think it's huge to have a different part of the lineup put up those types of numbers," Kendrick said. "I think we're going to need everybody to do those types of things if we're going to continue to win."

The Angels trail the Athletics by 3 1/2 games for the second Wild Card spot. If the Halos continue to pitch like they have in Boston and their offense remains a constant, that gap could continue to shrink.

"We got too much talent in here for something special not to happen," Weaver said. "We need to just go back to playing our ball and not try to do too much. From a pitching standpoint, we haven't been up to par the last month or two and we're trying are darndest to get back on track and if we do that, our offense is going to take care of the rest."

Austin Laymance is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.