By Pete Zarustica
ANAHEIM – The adage is that good pitching beats good hitting. On Wednesday might both the Los Angeles Angels and Houston Astros had good pitching. However, the difference was a home run by the Astros’ Evan Gattis in the top of the second inning that sent the Halos down to a 2-0 defeat and two games back in the American League West race.
Garrett Richards and Justin Verlander were both impressive. Richards (4-2) worked seven innings and gave up only four hits, while walking one batter and striking out four. Verlander (5-2) pitched a complete game, yielding five hits. He struck out seven Angels and walked just one. Neither gave up an earned run.
The most dramatic moment of the game came in the eighth when Mike Trout came to bat with two on and two out.
“Here’s the baseball game right here. Can you get out the best player in the world?” Verlander said of facing Trout. He could, as Trout hit a ground out to end the inning and the threat.
The Houston ace also had a milestone Wednesday, getting a strikeout in the ninth for his 2500th career strikeout.
The Astros (28-17) won the series two games to one. The Angels (25-18) will try to get back on track on Thursday as they open a series with the Tampa Bay Rays. Tyler Skaggs (3-2) will make the start for the Orange County team.
ALSO: The Los Angeles Dodgers lost 6-5 to the Miami Marlins. The loss put the team record at 18-26, last in the National League West.