Meyer, 2 relievers throw 1-hitter in Angels’ 7-0 win
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — The book on Alex Meyer was pretty clear: big stuff, bigger control problems.
Not so much Wednesday night for the 6-foot-9 right-hander.
Meyer executed nearly to perfection while allowing a hit and a walk over seven innings and leading the Los Angeles Angels to a 7-0 victory that ended the Washington Nationals’ six-game winning streak.
“We really didn’t have much of a chance,” Nationals manager Dusty Baker said. “Our reports were he didn’t have very good command, but he did tonight.”
Meyer (4-5) had a perfect game until he walked Anthony Rendon with two outs in the fifth. He lost his no-hitter with two outs in the sixth when Brian Goodwin doubled down the right-field line.
Meyer, Rendon and Goodwin were all first-round draft picks by the Nationals in 2011.
“I went to breakfast with (Goodwin) this morning and paid for it,” Meyer said. “I’ll have to talk to him about that.”
Meyer had been plagued by walks this season (41 in 60 1/3 innings) but had just the one free pass in a career-high seven innings. He struck out seven.
David Hernandez and Jose Alvarez each threw a scoreless, hitless inning to complete the one-hitter. It was only the second time this season the Nationals have been shut out.
“To make outs the way he did says a lot about his upside and potential,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.
Mike Trout and C.J. Cron each hit two-run homers to support Meyer. For Trout, it was his 18th of the season.
Gio Gonzalez (8-5) started for the Nationals but gave up a pair of first-inning runs on Albert Pujols’ single and Andrelton Simmons’ sacrifice fly, and it was all the runs Los Angeles would need.
Washington outfielder Bryce Harper did not play in the nationally televised game. It was a scheduled day off.
Meyer was supported by more outstanding defense. Outfielder Shane Robinson made a diving stop on Daniel Murphy’s drive in the first, and Simmons went deep into the hole to throw out Ryan Zimmerman in the seventh.
“We’ve been making the plays all year defensively,” Scioscia said. “That’s been one of the quiet factors that doesn’t get a lot of play, but we’re doing a great job defensively both in consistency and range.”
The Angels have not made an error in their last 13 games.
The Nationals took Meyer with the 23rd overall pick in the 2011 draft. He spent his first season at Class A before the Nationals traded him to the Minnesota Twins for outfielder Denard Span.
He came to the Angels last summer in a trade with the Twins.
“You can see why he was our No. 1 draft pick,” Baker said. “If he keeps throwing like that, maybe they’ve found something.”
Nationals: RHP Joe Ross had Tommy John surgery. ... OF Michael Taylor (oblique strain) resumed baseball activities. ... Nationals had no update on a second MRI on the fractured right wrist of shortstop Trea Turner. He is rehabbing in West Palm Beach, Florida.
Angels: Placed OF Cameron Maybin on the DL with a medial collateral ligament sprain in his right knee. The Angels said he would be out 2-4 weeks, though Maybin expects to return on the shorter end. ... Recalled Robinson from Triple-A and started him Wednesday.
Nationals: After a day off Thursday, RHP Max Scherzer (11-5, 2.01 ERA) is scheduled to open a three-game series in Arizona on Friday. Originally drafted by the Diamondbacks, he is 5-0 with a 2.41 ERA in seven career starts against Arizona.
Angels: RHP Ricky Nolasco (4-10, 4.82 ERA) opens a three-game series at home against Boston on Friday. Nolasco has been erratic this season, but in his last start against Tampa Bay he held the Rays to one run and two hits in seven innings.
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