ARLINGTON, Texas -- It was a calm and collected Jered Weaver who patiently answered reporters questions following an out-of-character performance in a 13-6 loss to Texas.
Television camera’s caught a much more animated Weaver in the dugout immediately following his fourth-inning hook a couple of hours earlier.
He looked angry enough to take a bite of the glove that he slammed on the dugout bench.
“They were playing, ‘Hit the Road, Jack’ and that’s what I was thinking,'' said Weaver. "It was time to hit the road after that performance.''
Weaver allowed 10 hits and eight runs, one fewer run than he permitted in his first seven starts combined. His ERA jumped from 1.60 to 2.83.
“We had a chance to win the series and I let the team down,’’ Weaver said. “It was one of those games when I couldn’t put guys away. There’s a reason why they are the best offense in the league. We scored some runs tonight and had a great chance to win if I do my job. It’s frustrating to let the team down.’’
Texas scored five runs in the third inning, all with two out. Weaver went ahead in the count and needed only one more strike to get out allowing only one run, but Michael Young doubled and David Murphy worked a walk, leading to Nelson Cruz’ grand slam over the left wall.
“Jered left a couple of breaking balls over the plate,’’ said Angels manager Mike Scioscia, “and it's not a forgiving lineup.’’
Weaver had success twice striking out Rangers’ red-hot slugger Josh Hamilton, but challenging him a third time with two on and first base open in the fourth inning proved costly. Hamilton doubled, sending Weaver to the showers.
“With their lineup, it is sort of pick your poison,’’ Weaver said. “I mean, with [Adrian] Beltre behind, what are you going to do?
“Hamilton is as hot as anybody in the league, but I was able to get him to expand a couple of times. He’s not a guy that walks a lot. That last time, he was able to get his hands out front somehow and hit the ball to right.’’
Scioscia said the choice of walking or pitching to Hamilton was left up to Weaver. Pitching coach Mike Butcher visited the mound just before Hamilton stepped to the plate.
“We had a good game plan for Hamilton,’’ Scioscia said. “We felt comfortable getting him to expand. We just didn’t execute.
“I know Jered was keyed up tonight and looking forward to pitching against one of the league’s best hitting teams,’’ Scioscia said. “He’s done it for us time and again. He just didn’t get it done tonight.’’
The Angels bats showed signs of coming around with a 12-hit attack including home runs by Mark Trumbo, Vernon Wells and Kendrys Morales.
“The offense tonight was a good sign for us,’’ said Trumbo, who had three hits. His home run traveled an estimated at 437 feet. “That's something we can build on.
"Their win was well-earned because Jered is one of the best in the league. Tonight was an anomaly. He’s the last guy around here I’m worried about.’’