Friday, October 25, 2002

Washburn's woes hurt Angels

Anaheim's fate now rests on shaky Appier

The Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO - Jarrod Washburn unraveled at the start, and the Anaheim Angels never recovered.

Now, they must beat the San Francisco Giants twice in a row when they return to Anaheim or lose in the franchise's first World Series appearance.

The Giants took a 6-0 lead against the Anaheim ace in the first two innings Thursday night and went on to beat the Angels 16-4 for a 3-2 series lead entering Saturday's Game 6 at Edison Field.

The Angels' fate now lies in the suspect hands of right-hander Kevin Appier, who has struggled in four postseason starts.

Appier will face Russ Ortiz in a rematch of the Game 2 starters.

The Giants scored three runs in each of the first two innings off Washburn on five hits and an uncharacteristic five walks - the most allowed by the 28-year-old left-hander in a game since April 27, 2001.

Three of the walks came in succession - to Reggie Sanders, J.T. Snow and David Bell - forcing across the Giants' third run.

The three straight walks tied a Series record, as did Washburn's four first-inning walks. Both have now happened eight times.

The walk to Snow was intentional, as was a second-inning walk to Barry Bonds, which preceded Benito Santiago's two-run single.

Washburn gave up an RBI double to Bonds in the first to put San Francisco ahead for good.

Bonds homered off Washburn in his first at-bat of Game 1, which the Giants won 4-3.

Washburn's five walks equaled his total for his 24 2/3 previous postseason innings. He went 18-6 with a 3.15 ERA during the regular season, walking only 59 in 206 innings.

His downfall began when he walked Jeff Kent with one out and one on in the first, throwing four straight balls after his first two pitches were strikes.

Bonds followed with his double and Santiago hit a sacrifice fly before the three consecutive walks.

Washburn threw 21 balls and 13 strikes in the first and 12 balls and 14 strikes in the second, giving him a total of 60 pitches - only 27 for strikes - at that point.

He retired his last six batters after Kenny Lofton's leadoff single in the third, finishing with 40 strikes and 39 balls in four innings.

By that time, it was too late.

Washburn, who struck out one, has a 9.31 ERA in 9 2/3 World Series innings and a 5.02 ERA in 28 2/3 postseason innings.

Certainly, the Angels expected more from their ace.

The Angels made a game of it by scoring three times in the fifth and once in the sixth, but the Giants put the game away by scoring twice in their half of the sixth, four times in the seventh and four more in the eighth.

Appier gave up five runs on five hits - three of them homers - in Game 2. Ortiz was hit even harder, giving up nine hits and seven runs in 12/3 innings.

The Angels blew 5-0 and 7-4 leads but rallied from a two-run deficit to win that game 11-10.

Appier is 0-1 with a 6.23 ERA in four postseason starts, allowing 20 hits and 12 earned runs in 17 1/3 innings. He has walked nine and struck out eight.

The Angels probably will need a better effort Saturday.

Appier, the only Anaheim player with playoff experience entering the postseason, was 14-12 with a 3.92 ERA during the season - his first with the Angels.

Counting Game 2 of the Series, he has pitched in four career games against the Giants, allowing 17 earned runs in 20 innings for an 0-2 record.

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