3/24/2013 7:59 P.M. ET
Vargas recovers nicely in outing vs. Giants
By Alden Gonzalez / MLB.com
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Jason Vargas and Barry Zito were each charged with only one run in their outings and both clubs had big late innings Sunday, as the Giants beat the Angels, 5-4, in front of a third straight sellout crowd at Tempe Diablo Stadium.
Vargas, who lines up as the Angels' fourth starter to begin the season, bounced back after giving up five runs in 5 1/3 innings against the Brewers his last time out. The 30-year-old left-hander held the Giants scoreless through six, giving up five hits and striking out five, then gave up a leadoff walk in the top of the seventh before being taken out.
The Giants tied the game at 1 later that frame, when first baseman Ricky Oropesa hit an RBI single off non-roster reliever Robert Coello.
The Angels' only run off Zito came in the fourth, on an RBI single by Howie Kendrick. Zito scattered six hits, walked three and struck out four in five innings, putting his Cactus League ERA at 3.00.
With Jose Mijares on the mound in the bottom of the seventh, Peter Bourjos led off with a triple and Mike Trout brought him in with a ground-rule double to deep center field, giving the Angels the lead again. Three batters later, Josh Hamilton hit a two-run double, giving him his second hit on the afternoon and putting his Cactus League batting average at .277.
In the top of the eighth, the Giants came back with three runs against an erratic Scott Downs, on a run-scoring groundout by Joaquin Arias and back-to-back RBI doubles by Brandon Crawford and Guillermo Quiroz. Right fielder Hunter Pence gave the Giants the lead in the ninth, drawing a walk off Ernesto Frieri, stealing second and scoring on Buster Posey's single.
Angels slugger Albert Pujols started his third game at first base and went 2-for-2 with a double, putting his average at .353. Pence also had a single and a double and is batting .368.
Up next: Tommy Hanson makes an important start for the Angels on Monday, when they travel to Glendale to face the White Sox and righty Gavin Floyd. Hanson, slated to be the Angels' fifth starter, had his last start interrupted after three innings due to tightness in his right triceps while warming up for the start of the fourth. The 26-year-old said postgame that he's "100 percent" fine, but he has only two more spring starts left to build enough stamina for the regular season. If he can get to 75 pitches Monday, then 90 in his last outing, Angels manager Mike Scioscia believes he should be ready for the regular season.
Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.