The Los Angeles Angels were swept by the L.A. Dodgers in the Dodger Stadium installment of the Freeway series after a 4-1 loss on Wednesday.
This game would have a different feel to it had Shohei Ohtani not lined a ninth-inning triple to break up Dodgers’ starter Tyler Anderson’s bid for a no-hitter.
If he doesn’t barrel up a pitch that caught too much plate and it’s rather a lazy fly ball to Mookie Betts for the second out, and Matt Duffy doesn’t have as much luck, this game is another mark in baseball history.
But baseball at the major league level is incredibly tough, and on Wednesday, Angels manager Phil Nevin knew that Anderson was as good as it gets, via Sarah Valenzuela of the L.A. Times:
“Anderson pitched a heck of a game,” Nevin said afterward.
Reid Detmers tossed a no-hitter earlier this season, but he was knocked out of the game after just 3.2 innings and allowed four runs on two homers with three walks. Anderson’s no-hit bid mirrored his in that he wasn’t blowing hitters away, albeit he had eight strikeouts, it was a work of a tactician.
Anderson was changing his arm slots, filling up the strike zone and missing barrels with his arm-side change up to the Angels’ right-handed hitters. He grades out in the 95th percentile in chase rate and limits hard contact with a 91st percentile hard-hit rate:
“This game’s hard,” Nevin said. “I’ll never forget how hard it was to play. I promise you that. … I wouldn’t consider this getting blown out at all. It just doesn’t look good because you don’t get a hit until the ninth.”
Once Anderson was taken out of the game after the Ohtani triple, Dodgers closer Craig Kimbrel surrendered an RBI single to the first batter he faced in Duffy, but this just became another loss in the Angels’ tough stretch of games.
Former manager Joe Maddon believed Angels needed more time
Angels general manager Perry Minasian decided to relieve manager Joe Maddon of his duties after the club dropped their 12th straight loss, a move that shocked fans, players, and even Maddon. However, Minasian made the move with optimism they can turn their season around and make the playoffs.
The Angels were 11 games over .500 in mid-May and were finally showing what their talent could do when they put it all together, but that magic ended, and Maddon believed too much happened too fast.
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