Angels 5, Blue Jays 0
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP)—Leave it to the team Roy Halladay has the most trouble with to end his 15-game winning streak.
The defending World Series champion Anaheim Angels burst the bubble of the Toronto Blue Jays right-hander, getting to him early in a 5-0 victory as Ramon Ortiz and Ben Weber combined on a four-hitter.
“It was a lot of fun,” Halladay said. “But you don’t win that many games by yourself. You have to have a lot of things go right for you. The team did back me up every time out and I did get a lot of breaks. The team deserves an awful lot of the credit for it. I understand that during the season, you’re going to lose some games.”
The Angels also prevented Halladay (15-3) from matching the Blue Jays’ record of 10 consecutive road wins, set three years ago by David Wells. Halladay has a 7.75 ERA in six career starts against Anaheim.
“I guess, on paper, you wouldn’t think we’d be the team to break his winning streak—the way we’ve been playing,” said Tim Salmon, who drove in a run with one of his two doubles. “It’s amazing the way things click at the craziest times. But we manufactured some runs early and did some little things. We haven’t been seeing a lot of that lately.”
Anaheim’s Scott Spiezio, who snapped an 0-for-22 drought with a single his last time up, had a pair of run-scoring groundouts to help send Toronto to its 21st loss in 29 games. David Eckstein was 3-for-4 with an RBI single.
Ortiz (13-8) won for the ninth time in 12 decisions, allowing three hits and stranding seven runners in scoring position over seven innings. He struck out three, walked five and hit two batters with pitches.
“He wasn’t as sharp tonight as we’ve seen him,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. “If you walk five Toronto Blue Jays in a game, you’ve got to figure he gave up a bunch of runs. But he made some terrific pitches to some very good hitters at key times and got out of some jams. And that’s a good sign.”
Halladay’s success has been predicated on a fastball that has good movement. But this time, there was none.
“Usually, if I’m throwing the fastball with movement, it’s easier to work around location problems. But I really felt like every time I tried to let one go straight, I just couldn’t get it going,” he said. “I really felt naked. So you swallow your pride and do the best you can to get guys out, and sometimes it just isn’t enough.”
Halladay had not lost since going 0-2 in his first six starts, including an 8-4 defeat to the Yankees at SkyDome on opening day and a 5-0 loss to the Yankees on April 15 at New York. He won his next 11 outings, setting a franchise record, and ran his streak to 15 wins over 18 starts.
The two-time All-Star, who had 19 wins last season, needed one more to tie Roger Clemens and five others—including Hall of Famers Walter Johnson and Lefty Grove—at 16 straight wins without a loss in one season.
The record is 19 straight, shared by two New York Giants pitchers—Tim Keefe (1888) and Rube Marquard (1912).
Clemens also had a 15-game winning streak with the Blue Jays, a club record that Halladay tied last Sunday against Baltimore.
Halladay gave up hits to his first three batters, after holding the Orioles to just two hits over seven innings in his previous start. He also allowed a run to score on a wild pitch in the seventh.
“I got beat by a good team,” said Halladay, who allowed five runs and nine hits over 6 2-3 innings with six strikeouts and no walks. “They did a good job of getting guys on and moving them over.”
Ortiz retired Frank Catalonotto with runners at second and third in the fourth. The Blue Jays also had two on in scoring position in the seventh, but major league RBI leader Carlos Delgado grounded out to shortstop Eckstein on the right side of the infield with the Angels playing an overshifted defense.
Eckstein led off with a single and scored on Salmon’s double to left-center. Darin Erstad came home on Spiezio’s grounder to second.
Eckstein made it 3-0 in the second with a two-out RBI single after Adam Kennedy singled and stole second. The Angels did not get another baserunner until Salmon led off the sixth with his second double and scored on Spiezio’sgrounder to third.
Halladay has a first-inning ERA of 4.32. From the second inning on, his ERA is 3.27. … Delgado’s sore knees have improved after staying off the artificial turf at SkyDome. He was back at 1B for the Blue Jays after four games in the DH role. … Halladay failed to complete seven innings for thethird time in his last 19 starts.