As if the Angels and Washington Nationals didn't do enough to fill a blooper reel Tuesday night, the usually sure-handed teams combining for seven errors and three wild pitches, Washington right-hander Todd Coffey provided even more comic relief in the sixth inning. The bullpen gate swung open, and out burst Coffey, a 6-foot-4, 280-pounder who broke into a dead sprint on the warning track and didn't stop until he got to the mound 90 yards away. To an Angel Stadium crowd unfamiliar with Coffey's game-entering shtick, it looked like a defensive lineman who recovered a fumble and raced the length of the field for a touchdown. Which seemed fitting on a night both teams flexed some considerable muscle and fielded their positions like a bunch of offensive tackles. The Angels prevailed, rallying for three runs on two homers in the sixth inning and crushing another homer in a five-run eighth for an 11-5 interleague victory that pushed their record to 41-40, the first time they've been above .500 since they were 30-29 on June 3. "We broke it open with some big hits with runners in scoring position," Manager Mike Scioscia said. "When you drive the ball, it can get you back into games and break games open." The Angels haven't driven the ball much at home, where they had only 14 homers in 36 games, as opposed to the 46 homers they have in 44 road games. But Erick Aybar led off the sixth inning with a home run to right, and Vernon Wells lined a two-run shot to left, his 10th this season, to turn a 5-4 Angels deficit into a 6-5 lead. Wells, who has hovered around the .200 mark all season, also singled to spark the eighth inning rally and cap a four-hit game that raised his average to .219, the highest it has been since opening day, when he was one for four. Alberto Callaspo had a run-scoring single and first baseman Mark Trumbo atoned for a costly two-run error in the sixth by lining a two-run double to center. Hank Conger followed with a two-run homer to right, giving the Angels their first three-homer game at home this season. Reliever Bobby Cassevah preserved a one-run lead in the seventh when he got Wilson Ramos to ground into an inning-ending double play with the bases loaded.
Vernon Wells puts together a big game in Angels' 11-5 victory
Los Angeles Times | Jun 29