Series: Game 1 of 3

Anaheim leads 1-0 (as of 9/13)

Game 1: Friday, September 13
Texas 2Final
Anaheim 3
Game 2: Saturday, September 14
Texas 6Final
Anaheim 8
Game 3: Sunday, September 15
Texas 4Final
Anaheim 13

Rangers 2

(69-78, 29-43 away)

Angels 3

(92-55, 50-26 home)

    10:05 PM ET, September 13, 2002

    Angel Stadium of Anaheim, Anaheim, California 

    123456789 R H E
    TEX 100010000 2 - -
    ANA 00210000 - 3 - -

    W: J. Washburn (18-5)

    L: J. Benoit (3-4)

    S: T. Percival (38)

    Washburn beats Rangers to end tough week

    ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -- Able to focus completely on his pitching for the first time in almost two weeks, Jarrod Washburn became the Angels' first 18-game winner since 1991.

    Tim Salmon

    The Angels must take advantage of Tim Salmon's discipline.

    "I was a little anxious to see what kind of reaction I would get. It was answered quickly when I went out to warm up and heard fans saying, 'We're behind you' and 'Go get 'em,'' Washburn said Friday night after Anaheim beat Texas 3-2 to remain tied with Oakland for the AL West lead.

    "Once I got out on the mound, it was business as usual, just trying to get guys out.''

    Earlier this week, Washburn dealt with being investigated for an alleged sexual assault. The pitcher was never arrested and the Orange County district attorney's office declined to file charges, saying the case had been thoroughly reviewed and was being rejected "based on lack of sufficient evidence at this time.''

    Washburn (18-5) became the Angels' top winner since 1991, when Mark Langston won 19 games and Chuck Finley and Jim Abbott each had 18 victories.

    Washburn allowed two runs, one earned, on five hits, walked none and struck out five in 7 1/3 innings as the Angels won their fourth straight and 14th of the last 15.

    He smiled and tipped his cap to the crowd of 35,345 as he walked off the field in the eighth inning. He got a standing ovation, and said later, "I'm glad I pitched well enough to get one.''

    The Rangers' Ivan Rodriguez didn't see any difference in Washburn.

    "He's a great pitcher and a very aggressive pitcher. That problem that happened to him didn't affect him at all,'' Rodriguez said.

    Anaheim manager Mike Scioscia also thought Washburn was completely focused, saying, "He was great. He didn't go out there with any baggage or distractions.''

    The Angels' victory helped them pick up a game in the wild-card standings as Oakland beat Seattle to drop the Mariners eight games behind the division co-leaders.

    The Angels' 92nd win also moved them within one victory of the club record set in 1982 under Gene Mauch.

    Anaheim's Troy Percival pitched a perfect ninth to earn his 38th save in 42 chances.

    Garret Anderson and Adam Kennedy had RBI singles off Joaquin Benoit (3-4) and David Eckstein's sacrifice fly provided the other run for Anaheim, which did all its scoring in the first four innings.

    Kennedy's RBI single gave Anaheim a 3-1 lead in the fourth, but the Rangers' Todd Greene cut the deficit to one run with a solo home run off Washburn in the fifth. The Angels went up 2-1 in the third on Eckstein's sacrifice fly and Anderson's run-scoring single.

    Alex Rodriguez singled with two out in the first inning and came home as Kennedy dropped Anderson's throw to second when Rafael Palmeiro doubled.

    Game notes

    Texas was coming off a four-game sweep of Seattle. ... The Angels plan to conduct an internal investigation into the allegations against Washburn, with the organization concerned about any possible security breakdowns at the stadium, said Tim Mead, Angels' vice president of communications. He said all findings will be confidential because it is an employer-employee matter. ... Washburn has won all three of his starts since the allegations were made against him. ... The Angels' 17-win improvement over last season broke the previous club record of 16 following a 162-game season -- accomplished in 1962 and 1989. ... Greene was at DH after leaving Thursday's game in the eighth inning when he was hit on the right cheekbone by a foul tip. ... Ruben Rivera's single for Texas in the fifth inning ended an 0-for-18 streak and snapped his string of striking out in eight consecutive at-bats.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press