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August 27, 2011

Final: Angels 8, Rangers 4

ARLINGTON – Before the game, Ron Washington pointed out C.J. Wilson as the one guy the Texas Rangers wanted to ride until the end of the season. Washington said Wilson would get the ball once every five days the rest of the way, regardless of off days.

Wilson had earned it, of course. Going into Saturday’s start, he had won three consecutive outings, shutting down Oakland, Anaheim and Boston.

But, on Saturday, Anaheim got the best of Wilson. The Angels took him deep four times en route to an 8-4 victory over the Rangers. The victory pulls the Angels to within two games of the Rangers in the American League West.

The Angels took an early lead in the second on a solo shot by Vernon Wells. In the third, they made it 2-0 on an RBI single by Torii Hunter. Then, they pushed it to 4-0 in the fourth with solo blasts by Mike Trout and Bobby Wilson, the Angels’ Nos. 8-9 hitters.

The Rangers scored two runs in the fourth to pull within 4-2 on a sacrifice fly by Michael Young and a run-scoring single by Mike Napoli.

But Anaheim scored two more off Wilson in the fifth. Peter Bourjos led off with a solo homer to left, and Erick Aybar singled in a run.

Wilson lasted five innings, allowing six runs on 10 hits with one walk and two strikeouts. The four home runs allowed set a career high. Going into the game, he had given up 10 home runs in 27 starts this season. In 2010, Wilson allowed 10 home runs over 33 starts. It also marked his shortest outing since lasting 3 2/3 innings on July 31 at Toronto. 

Day 1 of the Angels’ plans to start Ervin Santana and Jered Weaver on short rest worked out for them. Santana earned his 10th victory, allowing four runs on four hits with one walk and two strikeouts over seven innings.

But the Rangers made it interesting in the ninth, bringing the tying run to the plate.

Michael Young led off the inning with a single to center off Angels closer Jordan Walden, and moved to second on a wild pitch. Mike Napoli then worked a walk from an 0-2 count. 

Walden struck out Mitch Moreland, but Nelson Cruz singled to right to load the bases. That ended Walden’s night, as the Angels brought in lefty Hisanori Takahashi to face David Murphy. Takahashi ended the game by getting Murphy to ground into a double play.

-- Drew Davison

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To copy from Dandy Don, "turn out the lights the party's over."

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