BALTIMORE (AP) — Jason Hammel’s run of 19 straight innings without yielding an earned run ended after eight pitches.
Things only got worse after that.
Baltimore’s winningest pitcher didn’t make it out of the fourth inning, and the Orioles struggled at the plate again in a 13-1 loss to the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday night.
Hammel (8-3) entered with a two-game winning streak in which he pitched a combined 17 innings without allowing an earned run. That meant nothing to the hard-hitting Angels, who roughed up Baltimore pitching in a two-game sweep.
Hammel gave up eight runs and eight hits in 3 1/3 innings, his shortest outing of the season.
“Good-hitting ballclub, not necessarily power but just putting it in play,” Hammel said of the Angels. “They’re going to put the bat on the ball and put it in play somewhere, and that’s what happened tonight.”
One night after reaching season highs in homers and hits, Los Angeles set a season mark for runs in its most lopsided victory of 2012. The Angels totaled 20 runs and 33 hits during their sixth straight series win.
Wilson Betemit had three hits for the Orioles, who have lost six of eight. Baltimore has scored only 12 runs during that slide. Ater going 0 for 6 with runners in scoring position, the Orioles re 2 for 47 in that situation over the last nine games.
“It’s always frustrating,” said J.J. Hardy, who was twice robbed of hits by excellent fielding plays. “Whenever we get
runners in scoring position, we always want to get them in. It just hasn’t been going our way lately.”
Kendrys Morales had three hits and four RBIs, and Mike Trout had four hits and scored three runs for the Angels, who have won 13 of their last 17 games overall and 13 of 14 on the road. Alberto Callaspo had two hits in a six-run fourth that made it 9-1.
Making his second start for Los Angeles since spending three weeks on the disabled list with a lower back strain, Jered Weaver (8-1) allowed one run and six hits over 6 2/3 innings. He walked one and struck out six.
The right-hander lowered his ERA to 2.31 and became the seventh pitcher in club history to win 90 games. The two-time All-Star is 90-48 in six-plus seasons.
Los Angeles set the tone in the first inning when Hunter hit a solo shot into the left-field seats, the first home run off Hammel in five starts since May 30.
In the bottom half, Trout made a sensational leaping catch at the center-field wall to rob Hardy of a homer.
“For sure, that’s probably the best play I’ve seen against me,” Hardy said. “Maybe the best I’ve seen against anyone else,
too. Pretty good.”
Hardy hated to see it happen, but Weaver appreciated the view.
“One of the best plays I have seen behind me,” he said. “Obviously very uplifting, and I played off of that. The offense
did the rest.”
Chris Davis followed with a two-out single to end an 0-for-29 drought and Adam Jones hit an RBI double, but that was the extent of Baltimore’s attack.
Los Angeles went up 3-1 in the third. Hammel retired the first two batters, then gave up a single and two walks to load the bases for Morales, who grounded a two-run single up the middle.
The Angels’ six-run fourth was their most prolific inning of the season. The uprising was fueled by two errors and featured RBI singles by Howie Kendrick, Trout, Hunter and Morales.
Los Angeles made it 11-1 in the fifth, scoring two runs on a two-out error by second baseman Brian Roberts. In the seventh, Peter Bourjos doubled in a run and scored on a single by Morales.
NOTES: Orioles DH Nick Johnson left the game with an injured right wrist. He will have an MRI on Thursday. … Angels first baseman Albert Pujols walked three times before being replaced in the sixth inning. … The Orioles activated RHP Matt Lindstrom (finger) from the 15-day DL and optioned utility player Steve Tolleson to Triple-A Norfolk. … The Angels continue their nine-game road trip Thursday night in Toronto, where they will play a four-game series. Baltimore will send Wei-Yin Chen to the mound Thursday night in the opener of a four-game series against Cleveland. … Angels SS Erick Aybar had his 11-game hitting streak snapped. … Morales increased his career average against Baltimore
to .386 (27 for 70), the best against any AL club.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)