Pujols, Angels light up Francis
Denver, CO (Sports Network) - Albert Pujols smacked two hits, including a two- run homer, and had four RBI and two runs scored as the LA Angels of Anaheim spoiled Jeff Francis' return to Colorado with an 11-5 win over the Rockies in the middle installment of a three-game interleague set.
Mike Trout and Torii Hunter both registered three hits and three runs scored for the Angels, who have won three of four. Alberto Callaspo and Howie Kendrick also had three hits to go with a run scored apiece.
Dan Haren (4-6) wobbled through 5 1/3 innings, surrendering four solo homers among his 10 hits allowed, but got the win. He fanned four and walked one.
Francis (0-1), who spent the first six years of his MLB career with Colorado and is fourth on the franchise's win list with 55, was shelled for eight runs on 10 hits and a walk in just 3 1/3 frames.
"I know I've got a lot more than that to offer this team," said Francis. "I'll continue to work hard to bounce back from it."
Tyler Colvin hit two homers, while Carlos Gonzalez, Marco Scutaro and Chris Nelson also went deep for the Rockies, who have dropped four in a row.
The Angels pushed across at least a run in each of the first four frames and held an 8-2 advantage heading into the fifth.
Pujols brought home a run with a sacrifice fly and Hunter crossed the plate on a Francis wild pitch to make it 2-0 in favor of the Angels before Scutaro pulverized a solo shot off the foul pole in left, which cut the deficit to 2-1 after an inning of play.
Trout slapped a two-out, two-run single to center while Pujols' run-scoring base hit pushed the Angels' margin to 5-1 in the second.
"When you're winning, the attitude is a lot better," said Trout. "We're coming together as a team, hitting and pitching well and it's been awesome."
Once again, the Rockies got a run back in the home half as Colvin belted a leadoff homer to right-center, cutting the margin to 5-2.
RBI groundouts by Erick Ayber and Mark Trumbo in the third and fourth, respectively, padded the Angels lead before Kendrick's run-scoring base hit to center made it 8-2.
Gonzalez and Nelson's solo homers in the fifth and sixth, respectively, were sandwiched around Pujols' two-run opposite-field blast in the sixth.
Colvin's second round-tripper in the seventh came before Trumbo's RBI groundout in the eighth, which concluded the scoring.
With Colorado, the 31-year-old Francis posted a 55-50 mark to go with a 4.77 ERA and 603 strikeouts in 882 2/3 innings pitched. Francis spent last season with the Kansas City Royals, registering a 6-16 record with a 4.82 ERA and 91 strikeouts in 183 innings pitched...Before the game, the Rockies designated pitcher Esmil Rogers for assignment...Trout also stole two bases, giving him 13 for the year.