Wednesday, April 23, 2014
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Angels 7, Nationals 2

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[April 23, 2014]  WASHINGTON — Angels 7, Nationals 2: Albert Pujols homered twice to reach 500 for his career and drove in five runs as visiting Los Angeles rolled past Washington.

Pujols became the 26th player in major-league history to hit 500 homers with a two-run shot into the left-center field seats in the fifth inning off Taylor Jordan (0-3), who earlier yielded Pujols’ three-run homer in the first. Pujols became the first player in major league history to hit home runs Nos. 499 and 500 in the same game.

While Pujols powered the Los Angeles offense, Tyler Skaggs (2-0) allowed two runs on three hits over seven frames in his first career start against the Nationals. Howie Kendrick and Erick Aybar added two hits apiece for the Angels, who have won five straight and seven of their last eight games against Washington.

J.B. Shuck led off the game with a double and Mike Trout reached base on third baseman Anthony Rendon’s throwing error before Pujols crushed a 1-1 pitch deep into the left-field seats. Chris Iannetta later capped the four-run first inning with an RBI single off Jordan, who yielded six runs (four earned) over five frames.

The Nationals, who have lost four of their last six, cut into the deficit with two runs in the third before Pujols extended the lead to 6-2 by crushing a 1-2 sinker into the seats to the right of the visiting bullpen. The 34-year-old Pujols, who became the third-youngest player to reach the 500 mark, leads the majors with eight homers this season.

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GAME NOTEBOOK: The only two players to reach the 500 homers faster than Pujols are Alex Rodriguez and Jimmie Foxx, who both accomplished the feat at age 32. … Pujols came out for a curtain call after his milestone homer following a standing ovation from the fans at Nationals Park. … Washington, which has been outscored 25-6 in the first inning, was held to three hits overall and went hitless after the third inning.

[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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