Los Angeles Angels

Fast-starting Halos beat Astros 7-2

ALBERT PUJOLS smacked a bases-loaded double in the first inning as the Angels defeated the Astros 7-2 on Tuesday.

The Los Angeles Angels began the season – indeed, spent most of the first half of the 2019 campaign – with an epic slow start.

But now the Halos are off to fast starts, not only in each game but overall as they are poised to climb the latter in the playoff race.

On Tuesday, the Angels jumped off to a 6-0 first inning start and went on to defeat the Houston Astros 7-2 in Anaheim. It was their fifth straight victory since the All-Star break and improved their record to 50-46.

More importantly, the win brought the Angels within a half-game of the Texas Rangers, the third-place team in the American League West. Now the Halos are 4.5 games out of a wild card playoff spot.

“It’s actually been really productive. It’s given us some cushion in games,” Angels manager Brad Ausmus said. “Today was another example of that. I think the offense is the biggest piece of that puzzle [in the win streak].”

With Mike Trout out of the lineup with a mild calf injury, Albert Pujols was again the man with the power. His bases-loaded double in the first inning brought in three runs and he scored on the next play.

Andrew Heaney had a bumpy start, giving up eight hits and two runs in 4.1 innings. The bullpen was again impressive, with three relievers yielding five hits but no runs the rest of the way. Noe Ramirez (4-1) got the win.

On Wednesday, the Angels will again meet the Astros. Felix Pena (7-2) will get the start for the Halos as they attempt to sweep the three-game series from the AL West leaders.

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