Playoff Series: Game 2 of 5

Anaheim won 4-1

Game 1: Tuesday, October 8
Anaheim 1Final
Minnesota 2
Game 2: Wednesday, October 9
Anaheim 6Final
Minnesota 3
Game 3: Friday, October 11
Minnesota 1Final
Anaheim 2
Game 4: Saturday, October 12
Minnesota 1Final
Anaheim 7
Game 5: Sunday, October 13
Minnesota 5Final
Anaheim 13

Angels 6


    8:20 PM ET, October 9, 2002

    Mall of America Field, Minneapolis, Minnesota 

    123456789 R H E
    ANA 130002000 6 - -
    MIN 000003000 3 - -

    W: R. Ortiz (1-0)

    L: R. Reed (0-1)

    S: T. Percival (1)

    Erstad, Fullmer homer in Angels' Game 2 win

    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- So much for Minnesota's Metrodome dominance.

    Darin Erstad and Brad Fullmer homered off Rick Reed as Anaheim built a six-run lead, and the high-flying Angels beat the perky, pesky Twins 6-3 Wednesday night to head home with a split in the first two games of the AL Championship Series.

    Game 2 at a glance
    After being shut down by Joe Mays and Eddie Guardado in the opener, the Angels' offense came to life in a hurry. Darin Erstad got Anaheim going with a one-out solo homer in the top of the first inning. In six postseason games, Erstad is batting .393.

    Rick Reed struggled from the outset as he allowed four runs in the first two innings and six runs overall in 5 1/3 innings. Reed also gave up two home runs, increasing his total to six home runs allowed in his two postseason starts this year.

    Key move
    Reed had scraped through five innings, and it was obvious he didn't have his best stuff as he hadn't struck out a batter. But Ron Gardenhire brought him out for the sixth, despite the Twins' deep bullpen. Brad Fullmer's two-run homer quickly made it 6-0.

    Key stat
    Troy Percival, who earned the save by retiring the final four Twins batters, hasn't allowed an earned run in 34 career outings against Minnesota.

    Looking ahead
    Eric Milton will start Game 3 for the Twins. He defeated the A's in Game 4 of the Division Series, allowing two runs in seven innings in an 11-2 win. Jarrod Washburn will start for the Angels. He was 2-0 with a 2.70 ERA in three starts against the Twins during the regular season.

    "You have to get acclimated to the dome,'' Fullmer said. "We got acclimated a little bit.''

    A night after Joe Mays stymied Anaheim's high-octane offense in the Twins' 2-1 opening victory, the Angels got to Reed from the start. Erstad, the No. 2 batter, sent Reed's sixth pitch over the fence in right-center, where it landed 409 feet away -- nestled in one of the stacked-up seats used for Vikings games.

    "It's nice to get a lead. It's nice to jump out. That gave us a big lift,'' Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.

    Anaheim tacked on three more runs in the second, two of them unearned because of a costly error by catcher A.J. Pierzynski -- who couldn't hold on to a throw home after Reed caught a runner off first.

    "The game should have been 2-0,'' Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said.

    When Fullmer chased Reed with a two-run homer in the sixth, it seemed over. But Minnesota battled right back, knocking Ramon Ortiz out in the sixth when Corey Koskie hit an RBI single and Doug Mientkiewicz, who had three hits, had a two-run single.

    Brendan Donnelly replaced Ortiz and got out of the inning, and 20-year-old rookie Francisco Rodriguez struck out two in a 1-2-3 seventh.

    After a two-out walk to Torii Hunter and a single by Mientkiewicz put runners at the corners in the eighth, Scioscia brought in Troy Percival, whom he had been reluctant to use in the eighth until after the New York Yankees rallied to win the division series opener.

    "Percy is a guy we do have available for four outs when necessary,'' said Scioscia, who brought in his closer just four times in the eighth during the regular season.

    Percival, who hasn't allowed an unearned run to Minnesota in 35 innings during the regular season, got ahead 1-2 in the count on pinch-hitter Bobby Kielty. With the crowd on its feet, shouting and waving Homer Hankies, Kielty took a called third strike on a changeup.

    "It came back nice over the inside corner,'' said Percival, who finished up with a perfect ninth for the save. He struck out three of the four batters he faced.

    "We made too many mistakes early,'' Gardenhire said. "We had a chance. We had some runners on and had some opportunities.''

    When the series resumes Friday in California, where the Angels' "rally monkey'' awaits, Jarrod Washburn pitches against the Twins' Eric Milton -- who no-hit Anaheim in September 1999.

    Serving it up
    Most home runs allowed in one postseason:
    Pitcher Year HRs W-L
    Eric Show, S.D. 1984 7 0-2
    Scott Garrelts, S.F. 1989 7 1-2
    Andy Pettitte, N.Y. 1996 7 2-1
    Rick Reed, Min. 2002 6 0-2
    David Wells, N.Y. 1998 6 4-0
    Jack Morris, Tor. 1992 6 0-3

    With Tuesday's win, Minnesota improved its postseason record at the Metrodome -- where grounders to shortstop can turn into doubles -- to 13-2. Reed has two of the Twins' three postseason losses in the dome.

    Anaheim, which had been 1-9 in ALCS road games, found the solution: Get a big early lead to quiet those Homer Hanky-waving fans.

    "Our job was to come here and win one out of two on the road,'' Fullmer said.

    A Metrodome baseball record 55,990 filled the ballpark, and they didn't like what they saw early. Erstad, 5-for-12 against Reed in his career, put the Angels ahead in the first with his first postseason homer.

    After failing to get a leadoff hitter on in the first 10 innings of the series, Anaheim's first three batters got hits in the second, with Scott Spiezio's bloop double near the right-field line bouncing over an onrushing Michael Cuddyer to make it 2-0.

    After Reed threw out a runner at the plate on a comebacker, Pierzynski's error cost the Twins, the top-fielding team in the major leagues during the regular season, two more runs.

    Reed caught Adam Kennedy leaning and threw to first for the pickoff. Kennedy broke for second, Spiezio then headed home from third, and Mientkiewicz threw to the plate.

    But Pierzynski couldn't handle the throw as Spiezio made contact with him and scored. David Eckstein's RBI single made it 4-0.

    Minnesota, which had just 74 errors in 161 games during the season, had six in seven postseason games. Pierzynski, who had three during the season, has two during the playoffs. Ortiz, hit hard by the Yankees last Friday, allowed three runs and 10 hits in 5 1/3 innings, repeatedly pitching out of trouble. Minnesota's leadoff hitters reached in the third, fourth and fifth innings, but one was erased by a pickoff and two by double-play grounders. Anaheim has turned eight already in the postseason

    Reed, 1-3 in seven career postseason starts, gave up six runs -- four earned -- and eight hits in 5 1/3 innings.

    "I've got a lot of redeeming to do, but it's a seven-game series,'' Reed said. "My number might come up again.''

    Game notes

    Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura and former Twins star Tony Oliva sang "Take Me Out to the Ball Game'' in the seventh inning. "This is dedicated to Bud Selig,'' Ventura told the crowd before starting the song. ... Minnesota's previous postseason losses in the dome were 5-2 to Toronto in Game 2 of the 1991 ALCS and 6-3 to Oakland in Game 3 of this year's division series. ... Angels RF Tim Salmon, who had a cortisone injection, left in the middle of the third inning because of a tight right hamstring. The Angels think he will be available Friday. ... Johan Santana, J.C. Romero, LaTroy Hawkins and Mike Jackson combined on shutout, two-hit relief for the Twins.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press