ANAHEIM – The Los Angeles Angels fell back to .500 on Monday night with a 7-3 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks, but the loss fell victim to some tough calls from the umpires and a replay system that the Angels felt should have gone their way, but didn’t.
In the bottom of the fourth, with Mike Trout, the first base runner of the night, on first, Albert Pujols grounded into a tough play for the Diamondbacks infield. With a nice toss to second from Chris Owings and better one-handed play from Nick Ahmed, the infield turned a 4-6-3 double play, but after replay, Pujols seemed to beat the throw.
“I don’t know how Albert Pujols is called out,” said Angels skipper, Mike Scioscia. “I really don’t. After you look at it, it’s obvious.”
The three minute and 42 second review, following Scioscia’s challenge took favor of Arizona’s side, and the play on the field remained unscathed by umpire and replay view.
“There’s been at least five through the course of the year that we thought could have gone the other way and whoever is in the booth thinks the other way,” said Los Angeles’ starting pitcher, Jered Weaver. “Especially that one with Albert, he was pretty much safe. It’s a part of our game but at the same time, I think we need to figure out something to start getting more things right. Especially after replay when you get another chance to look at it.”
In the eighth, with the Angels in striking distance, but on defense, another play caused controversy for the Angels, this time at the plate. A fly ball was sent to standard right field where Kole Calhoun was set, and threw a bullet to the plate. Nick Ahmed was called safe on a bang-bang play at the plate, and a review followed.
“I thought it was close but when you see the replay, it’s hard to overturn,” said Calhoun. “I think it it’s called safe it doesn’t get overturned, pretty bang, bang.”
The Angels went 0-for-2 on reviews/challenges for the night, and manager, Mike Scioscia, showed his displeasure in both calls.
“The play at the plate, again. When we were in New York, we went to the facility. It seems like they have every camera angle, every super-slow motion you would need. But yet we’re seeing, in my estimation, too many calls that aren’t reversed. Not only for us, but going for the other team also. I know it’s a work in progress, but believe me, there’s a frustration level. I think some things need to evolve as far as how we determine these calls, because there’s no standard for what is going to overturn a call. It comes to individual umpires’ interpretation, and that’s why I think some things will eventually be addressed.”
Despite two calls not going in favor of the Angels, their offense was limited to just four hits. They did manage three runs on one of those four hits, compliments of a Mike Trout double in the eighth that put the team within two runs of tying.
However, with the call in the eighth and two runs that came across the plate, Arizona was able to hold on to a 7-3 win, and are now within one game of .500 and put the Angels back at the .500 mark.
“I don’t what’s going on with that,” said Weaver. “I think everybody is kind of baffled the way the replay system has gone this year. It’s out of my hands. I don’t know what they’re looking at but it seems as though a couple have gone our way and we think the opposite. It is what it is, what are you going to do? You just have to deal with it and keep grinding.”
Three of the Diamondbacks seven runs came on one swing from slugger, Paul Goldschmidt. On a 1-0 count, with runners on first and second, Goldschmidt sent a ball to the waterfall in the rock pieces beyond the center field in the third inning. The home run was Goldschmidt’s 18th of the season, and gave him the National League lead in home runs, passing Bryce Harper in total bases.
“The last thing you want to do is walk a couple guys and you got their hottest hitter come to the plate. I got myself in a predicament there. You can’t pitch around him to load the bases. Just try to make some pitches to get himself out and obviously I left a curveball up there that I was trying to bounce off the plate and it popped out of my hand, he hit a homer.”
Final from Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California:
Diamondbacks, 7 (31-32); Angels, 3 (32-32)
W – Robbie Ray (2-1, 1.09)
L – Jered Weaver (4-7, 4.65)
S – Addison Reed (3, 4.56)