Santiago, Angels blank Rangers
(The Sports Xchange) - Left-hander Hector Santiago and three relievers combined on a two-hit shutout as the Los Angeles Angels earned a 7-0 win over the Texas Rangers on Sunday.
Santiago (8-9) permitted only one hit, a double by second baseman Rougned Odor in the second inning, but tied a career high with six walks before finishing with three strikeouts in the first shutout of his career.
"For the most part, I treated a walk as a hit: Forget about it and go after the next guy," Santiago said. "For some reason, I pitch better with guys on base. I've got to bear down.
"I needed this one for sure, just to show I can still get guys out even if I put them on base."
Second baseman Taylor Featherston collected three hits and two RBIs while third baseman David Freese added three hits and center fielder Mike Trout hit a home run.
"It's just huge to contribute, especially down the stretch," said Featherston, who started five of the Angels' past six games with Johnny Giavotella on the disabled list.
"When you're playing every day, you kind of let your instincts take over. All the hard work you put in starts to pay off."
The Angels used their fourth win in five games to move within 2-1/2 games of the Rangers for the American League's second wild-card spot and remain 5-1/2 games behind the first-place Houston Astros in the Western Division.
Second-place Texas fell three games behind Houston in the divisional race. Continued...