Mike Trout doesn’t seem to be feeling the pressure of his $426.5 million, 12-year contract when playing at home.
The Los Angeles Angels outfielder, who received his Silver Slugger award before Friday’s game against the Texas Rangers, hit two home runs in a 3-1 victory that snapped a five-game losing streak.
It was the 15th multi-home run game for Trout, who signed the largest contract in North American sports history before the end of spring training. It also marks the first time in his career he has homered in the Angels’ first two home games.
The two-homer game wasn’t the only thing Angels fans got from Trout. The team also gave away Trout bobbleheads commemorating his six Silver Slugger awards.
“It means a lot,” Trout said about having the big night. “Obviously, we have been struggling lately. These types of games can help us get some momentum going.”
Trout hit a Lance Lynn (0-1) fastball to center field in the sixth inning to give the Angels a 2-1 lead. He added a solo shot to center in the eighth off Jesse Chavez. Both times, Trout was ahead in the count.
“I made some adjustments from the first two at-bats and it worked out,” Trout said. “I got in a good position to hit and I didn’t miss them. “
Five Angels pitchers combined for a season-high 12 strikeouts. Felix Pena started and allowed one run and four hits with two walks and seven strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings.
Justin Anderson (1-0) got the win with 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief and Cody Allen picked up his second save.
“I thought everyone pitched well,” Angels manager Brad Ausmus said. “Felix did well and the bullpen did its job. We had clean innings for the most part.”
Lynn (0-1) went seven innings and allowed two runs and five hits with a walk and five strikeouts.
“I threw the ball right down the middle,” Lynn said of Trout’s homer. “He did what he is supposed to do. He’s got $430 million where he is going to sit on that pitch and hit it out of the ballpark. It was a terrible pitch.”
Texas scored in the fourth when Joey Gallo homered to tie it at 1. The Rangers left fielder put Pena’s slider over the wall in right for his third homer of the season. Elvis Andrus had two hits and has hit safely in seven of the first eight games.
“We had some pretty good at-bats late and just got a little unlucky,” Rangers manager Chris Woodward said.
The Angels scored first for only the second time this season. Brian Goodwin doubled to center with one out in the third, advanced to third on David Fletcher’s infield single and scored when Kole Calhoun singled to right.
Rangers: CF Delino DeShields was in the lineup after being hit in the left hand by a pitch Thursday. DeShields was sidelined for most of the first two months of last season after suffering a broken hamate bone in his left wrist after being hit by a pitch.
Angels: SS Andrelton Simmons didn’t play after he felt his back stiffen up during the second inning of Thursday’s game. Simmons said he got some extra treatment on Friday and that he felt as if he could play.
The Rangers appeared to have runners on first and second with one out in the eighth before it was overturned by instant replay.
Nomar Mazara hit a slow grounder that went off first baseman Justin Bour’s glove. Mazara appeared to beat second baseman Tommy La Stella’s throw, but replay overturned it when it showed that La Stella’s throw beat Mazara by half a step.
Texas, Seattle and the Los Angeles Dodgers remain the only teams to have hit a home run in every game. The eight-game run by the Rangers is the third-longest streak to open a season in club history.
Los Angeles’ Tyler Skaggs (0-1, 3.86 ERA) won both of his starts against the Rangers last season and allowed only one earned run in 11 innings. The left-hander will be opposed by Drew Smyly (0-0, 3.00), who had a no-decision in his first start against Houston on Monday. The left-hander has not started in Anaheim since July 25, 2014, when he was with Detroit.
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