Zack Cozart’s single in the bottom of the ninth inning scored Chris Young from second base to lift the Los Angeles Angels to a 2-1 win over the Minnesota Twins on Sunday afternoon in Anaheim, Calif.
Twins reliever Zach Duke (2-2) hit Young with a pitch to start the ninth inning. Martin Maldonado followed with a sacrifice bunt, moving the runner to second and bringing up Cozart, who already had two hits in the game.
Cozart swung at Duke’s first pitch and lined it into left field, Young scoring without a throw and helping the Angels split the four-game series with the Twins.
The Angels survived a Twins threat in the top of the ninth when Robbie Grossman doubled to right-center with one out off reliever Jim Johnson. Ehire Adrianza, on the move from first base on the pitch, tried to score.
The relay from center fielder Mike Trout to second baseman Ian Kinsler to the catcher Maldonado was in time to get Adrianza at the plate.
The Angels weren’t out of the jam yet, however. After Johnson walked Joe Mauer intentionally, he walked No. 9 hitter Bobby Wilson to load the bases.
Johnson was replaced by Blake Parker, who retired Brian Dozier on a foul popup to end the inning.
Parker (1-1) got the win despite making just one pitch in the game. He was the last of four relievers who pitched behind starter Shohei Ohtani, who had another impressive performance.
Ohtani gave up just one run on three hits and two walks in 6 1/3 innings, striking out 11.
Ohtani and Twins starter Fernando Romero matched zeros through four innings. But while Ohtani threw a scoreless inning in the top of the fifth, the Angels pushed across a run against Romero in the bottom of the inning.
Maldonado led off the inning with a double and went to third on an infield single by Cozart. After Kole Calhoun struck out for the first out of the inning, Justin Upton grounded into a force play, Cozart out at second but Maldonado scoring to put the Angels up 1-0.
In the Twins’ sixth, Dozier led off with a walk and went to second on a wild pitch. Max Kepler flied out to right for the first out of the inning, and Eduardo Escobar grounded out to second, moving Dozier to third. Ohtani escaped when he struck out Eddie Rosario for the final out of the inning.
Romero, who began the season in the minors, did not allow a run over 11 2/3 innings in his first two major league starts, victories over Toronto and St. Louis. On Sunday against the Angels, he gave up just one run on four hits and three walks in five innings, striking out six and finishing with a no-decision.
Ohtani also got a no-decision because the Twins rallied to tie the game in the seventh inning. Ohtani was replaced by Cam Bedrosian with one on and one out. After a single by Grossman, Mauer singled to drive in a run and tie the game at 1-1, the run charged to Ohtani.
—Field Level Media