ANAHEIM, Calif. If the Los Angeles Angels make their way into the postseason, they should put out a statement thanking the Red Sox for all their generous help.
The Sox and Angeles played six times over a 10-day period in the summer heat of the pennant race and Los Angeles won all of the games. The Angels finished off their sweep on Thursday night with a 5-2 victory.
The Sox were outscored 47-29 by the Angels this season and have lost eight straight games against Los Angeles going back to last year. This is the first time the Sox have ever been swept in a season series of at least six games by any opponent.
A few notes:
Jon Lester (8-11) allowed four runs on six hits in the first three innings then one run on three hits after that. Lester has three complete games, a career high and the most for a Red Sox lefthander since Frank Viola had six in 1992.
I just felt like it was my game, said Lester, who made 110 pitches through seven innings but returned to the mound in the eighth and retired the side in order. I felt good so I told Bobby and [pitching coach Randy Niemann] when I came in, Im not coming out. I just, for whatever reason, I dont know why, I felt it was my game.
That's commendable at any time, but especially under the circumstances.
James Loney (3 for 4) hit his first home run with the Red Sox since being acquired from the Dodgers and his fifth on the season. Loney has a hit and an RBI in each of his first four starts for the Sox. The last player to do that was Matt Stairs in 1995.
Mike Aviles was 2 for 3 with an RBI. His 59 RBIs are second among AL shortstops. His 13 home runs are third and his 27 doubles are tied for second. Through Wednesday, his 7.8 UZR was fifth in the league. He also is seventh in OPS.
If you judge Aviles against other shortstops, he has had a very solid season.
That's it from Anaheim. Catch you Friday from Oakland.