CHICAGO -- The Los Angeles Angels needed the kind of start they got from Jerome Williams on Friday night at U.S. Cellular Field.
One night after four relievers combined to throw 5 2/3 scoreless innings in a win against the Chicago White Sox, the Angels didn't have a lot of options left in the bullpen for Saturday night's game. They needed a solid outing from Williams -- filling in as a starter because of injuries -- and he delivered.
Williams picked up the win by allowing two runs in 6 2/3 innings and the Angels cashed in with a 3-2 victory that helped the bullpen reset a bit for Sunday night's series finale.
Scott Downs, Garrett Richards and closer Ernesto Frieri were called upon to preserve the slim one-run lead through the final 2 1/3 innings, but all three were up to the task. They gave Los Angeles eight straight scoreless innings of relief in the first two games of this series, and it came just in the nick of time for the Angels (14-22), who started the day fourth in the American League West, nine games behind first-place Texas.
Mike Trout led the way offensively for the Angels, going 2 for 4 with a two-run home run in the first inning, while Dayan Viciedo led the White Sox by going 3 for 3 and scoring one of their two runs -- both scored in the second inning.
Chicago, sitting last in the AL Central, has dropped two straight and five of its past seven games.
Jose Quintana (2-1) started for the Sox and took the loss, despite posting a solid outing after giving up Trout's homer. Quintana threw six innings and allowed just three runs, with the third unearned because of more fielding woes.
It was the third win in a row for the Angels, who last strung that many in a row together in mid-April by sweeping Detroit at home. They'll go for the sweep of the White Sox on Sunday night.
Trout's long home run to left in the first, following Alberto Callaspo's leadoff bloop single to right, gave the Angels a quick 2-0 lead against Quintana. He also gave up a two-out triple to Josh Hamilton but Hamilton was stranded when Jeff Keppinger snared Howie Kendrick's line-drive smash to third for the final out.
Trout's home run merely added to his career totals against the White Sox. He came into the game hitting .324 against Chicago, with two home runs and five RBI in 34 at-bats.
Chicago tied the game at 2-2 in the second inning off five singles, with Paul Konerko and Dayan Viciedo scoring the runs. The Angels went right back on top 3-2 in the third, keyed by more defensive problems for the Sox.
Tyler Greene's throwing error to first on Hamilton's two-out grounder to second allowed Albert Pujols to advance all the way to third, and he scored on a passed ball during a close play at the plate.
After leading the American League with a .988 fielding percentage, Chicago came into this game 13th among AL teams with 24 errors in 33 games -- including two Friday night that played a role in the Angels' 7-5 win.
They already had been charged with two more by the time Los Angeles came to bat in the top of the fifth on Saturday night, and Adam Dunn committed another error on a routine pop-up down the right-field line behind first base.
He quickly made up for it by gunning down Pujols at first after the Angels' slugger had rounded it too far, but it still went down as an error.
NOTES: White Sox infielder Conor Gillaspie was scratched from the starting lineup with upper-respiratory infection and Greene was given a start at second, moving Keppinger to third. ... Keppinger, hitting .191 before the game, was bumped down in the order to the seventh spot. "It's more just mixing it up," manager Robin Ventura said. "Sometimes there's big deals made about it. Sometimes you put pressure on yourself and sometimes you can take it off. You know what the track record is. You're just trying to get it out of him." ... Konerko made his 16th start of the season at designated hitter. He has made 16 at his more familiar position of first base, but Ventura said he's just trying to scale back Konerko's time in the field a bit to keep him fresh. ... White Sox second baseman Gordon Beckham reported no issues in his left hand after taking 100 swings off a tee for the second straight day. Beckham is recovering from surgery to remove a fractured bone in his left hand. ... The Angels sent outfielder Scott Cousins to Triple-A Salt Lake on Saturday and called up right-handed reliever Robert Coello to add another arm to the beleaguered bullpen. ... Luis Jimenez started at first base for the first time on Saturday, while Mark Trumbo was in left field. Angels manager Mike Scioscia said Trumbo might move back to first during late-inning defensive switches. ... Pujols is dealing with soreness in his knee and foot, which is exacerbated by the cold weather in Chicago. "He's trying to plow through some stuff and hopefully he'll be able to," Scioscia said. "There's no doubt (the knee and foot) are both impacted." ... Reliever Ryan Madson (Tommy John surgery) threw one inning during an extended spring training game in Arizona and showed good velocity. His next outing likely will come Monday with Class A Inland Empire of the California League. ... Shortstop Erick Aybar (hamstring) and reliever Scott Downs (sore foot) both went through the Angels' pregame routine to determine whether they would be available for Saturday night's game.