CA, Apr. 27 (US): Brandon Drury spent his first three weeks with the Angels in the Mist. The veteran found his way out of it right when the lowly Oakland Athletics came to Anaheim.
Drury shaved, doubled and drove in three runs in his third straight game with the Monsters, the AP reported, and Shuhei Ohtani hit a late two-run homer in Los Angeles’ 11-3 win Wednesday night.
Drury had an RBI double in the second, and hit a two-run homer in the fifth to give Los Angeles an 8–3 lead. The well-travelled utility player started slowly with his new team, batting . 179 in his first 20 games, but was 7-for-13 with three homers and 9 RBIs in Halos’ first three games against Oakland this week.
“Ball is a crazy game,” said Drury. “You start thinking too much and trying too little. It’s one of those games where you have to keep going, because you never know. You take that swing or you see that pitch, and you’re like, ‘That’s it.'” That’s what it was.”
Taking that swing on a homer against Oakland’s Ken Valdichuk on Monday, Drury said, helped him reset his mind and body.
“Everything I feel for me,” Drury said. “When I’m out there thinking about what I’m supposed to do, I’m really bad, as I’ve seen the first three weeks. It’s about as bad as I get. And when I’m out there believing in myself, being the dangerous hitter that I am, it’s so much better…for me, I’m good when I’m not thinking.”
Hunter Renfro also drove in three starts with Los Angeles, who won four of six. Oakland became the fifth team in major league history to lose 20 games in April.
Drury, Matt Theis and Zach Nieto had five-run second-inning doubles against Oakland’s Luis Medina (0-1), who gave up seven earned runs and eight hits over five innings in his major league debut.
Patrick Sandoval (2-1) became the only Angels player other than Ohtani to hit seven innings in a game this season, racking up six hits and two runs with a wealth of run support. “We made it one to nine,” Sandoval said. “It’s great. It’s going to be fun this year.”
Kevin Smith hit his second home run of the A’s, who lost 11 of 13. April’s record is 22 losses from the 1988 Baltimore Orioles, and Oakland still has four games to play before May.
Estori Ruiz caught two hits and drove in a run while stealing four bases for Oakland, becoming only the third first-class player to haul that many sacks in the past 30 years. He stole second base three times, and stole third in the third inning as well.
Medina is a former Yankees prospect acquired by Oakland last year, and the 23-year-old right fielder from the Dominican Republic got the call up to the majors on Tuesday after just three Triple-A games.
His fastball touched 99.9 mph in a clean Big A first half, but the Angels battled it out in the second. Tice had a two-run double among Los Angeles’ five hits.
Renfro then led off in the third with his seventh homer in April, the most in a single month of his career.
Otani hooked his sixth homer in the eighth inning.
Shintaro Fujinami pitched two innings of injured relief for Oakland in his first appearance since moving to the bullpen on Monday.
Athletics: Ramon Laureano went to Las Vegas to begin rehab for a strained left groin. Oakland hopes to get him back next week.
THE ANGELS: One day after C Logan O’Hoppe underwent surgery on a torn cleft in his left shoulder, the rookie said he would have to wear a sling for three weeks. O’Hoppe still hopes to return late in the season from injury with an estimated recovery time of four to six months.
Ohtani (3-0, 0.64 ERA) hit the sixth round of his amazing pitching season while holding a streak of 12 consecutive starts allowing two or fewer runs. Oakland finished the series with JP Sears (0-1, 4.98) on the mound.