Prior to becoming the Los Angeles Angels, they represented Anaheim, and in the 2002 season, they claimed baseball’s top spot, taking home a World Series Championship. Before making it to the Fall Classic, they defeated the Minnesota Twins in five games securing the American League crown.
With a 3-to-1 lead in the series, the Angels returned home for Game 5 of the AL Championship Series, and in front of a sold-out crowd, they put on a hitting clinic.
Kevin Appier took the mound in Game 1, going five innings in a 2-to-1 loss, but in Game 5, he tossed 5.1 innings and kept them in striking distance. With some early runs from the Twins on a few early extra-base hits, the Angels flexed their muscles and launched a trio of solo shots.
The series’ Most Valuable Player, Adam Kennedy, homered in the third to cut the lead in half. In the fifth, Scott Spiezio homered, and two batters later, Kennedy fired his second long shot of the game, giving the Angels the lead.
But in the top of the seventh inning, the Twins rallied for three runs, taking a 5-to-3 lead, but in the bottom half, the Angels went to work and put up a 10-spot.
Spezio and catcher Bengie Molina singled to put two runners on, setting up Kennedy’s third home run of the game, which gave way to the Twins bullpen. The hitting didn’t stop as LaTroy Hawkins immediately gave up three straight hits, and a bevy of miscues by the Twins allowed the game to get out of hand.
The Angels secured a 13-5 victory, propelling them to the World Series and the first AL pennant in franchise history.
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