Angels short hops10/07/2004 3:30 AM ET
By Jesse Sanchez / MLB.com
ANAHEIM -- One more loss and the Angels will be making plans for the offseason and which house they'll watch the ALCS on high-definition television.
But don't pull out the chips and dip just yet, the Angels are not going anywhere without a fight.
With two victories in Boston, the Angels can tie the series at 2 and head home for Game 5 of the American League Division Series in Anaheim. Should they win Game 5, the Angels would be the ninth team to come back from an 0-2 deficit to win a five-game postseason series. A series victory would also mean they would join the 2002 Yankees as the only teams to come back from an 0-2 deficit in the ALDS after losing the first two games at home.
The home team's play has not been perfect, but Boston starters Pedro Martinez and Curt Schilling also had something to do with putting the Angels in an 0-2 hole.
"Yeah, this was probably the best stuff [Martinez] has had against us all year, and I think Pedro is terrific when maybe the situation gets a little hot," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "He gets an extra gear."
A look at key statistics through two games of the ALDS.
||eight runs allowed per game is tough on any offense -- especially in the playoffs
||Curt Schilling and Pedro Martinez have performed as advertised -- the Anaheim offense has not
|BA w/ RISP
||squandered opportunities + Martinez + Schilling = 0-2 in ALDS|
||three runs per game against the Red Sox per game is average -- except when opponent is scoring eight
||physical errors are almost forgivable, but mental errors are not
||.571 BA, 1 HR, 1 RBI
||his effort never ceases, no matter the score
||.500 BA 1 HR, 2 RBIs
||as good as he is playing, he can't do it alone
||.125, 0 HR, 2 RBIs
||two RBIs don't hide the fact the slugger is coming up short when Angels need him most
||.111, 0 HR, 0 RBIs
||the sparkplug of the offense has fizzled at top
Behind the numbers
Everybody knows Bartolo Colon is a workhouse, including the Red Sox. The patient Boston hitters had forced Colon into 83 pitches thrown after four innings and made the big fella work for a total of 115 pitches during his six innings of work. Of the first 100 pitches from Colon, 31 were to Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz.
That pesky Johnny Damon is proving to be a real thorn for the Angels. In the seventh, he reached on a fielder's choice, beating out an attempted double play. He then stole second base and advance to third on a wild pitch. He later scored Boston's fourth run on Ramirez's sacrifice fly to put the Red Sox ahead for a lead and give them momentum they would not relinquish.
Starting Jose Molina over his brother, Bengie, proved to be a great idea for the Angels. Not only did Molina handle Colon well, but he also made one of the biggest defensive plays of the game when he picked Mark Bellhorn off second with the bases loaded in the second inning. He hit a bloop single in the fifth and scored the Angels' second run as part of a two-run inning.
Flashback to 2002?
The Angels need two wins to bring the ALDS back to Anaheim and keep the season alive. The last time the club needed two victories of this magnitude in the postseason, it delivered. Remember the consecutive wins in Games 6 and 7 of the 2002 World Series against San Francisco after trailing in the series, 3-2? The Angels faithful do.
SoCal history lesson
There is history in these parts. The first club to come back from an 0-2 deficit and win a five-game series was the crosstown rival Los Angeles Dodgers in 1981 when they came back to defeat the Astros in the NLDS. The Angels would be the ninth.
"I think Boston did a good job in some key situations and they got to our bullpen, which has been terrific all year. The one thing that I think hurt us tonight, and it does bother us, is the fact we didn't do the things offensively that we needed to do. We didn't get our bunts down, we had a chance to go from first to third a couple times and we didn't take advantage of it." -- Scioscia
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.