Series: Game 1 of 2

Anaheim leads 1-0 (as of 6/1)

Game 1: Tuesday, June 1
Game 2: Wednesday, June 2

Red Sox 6

(31-21, 13-12 away)

Angels 7

(31-20, 16-7 home)

    10:05 PM ET, June 1, 2004

    Angel Stadium of Anaheim, Anaheim, California 

    123456789 R H E
    BOS 110200002 6 13 2
    ANA 10020310 - 7 9 2

    W: K. Gregg (2-0)

    L: B. Arroyo (2-3)

    S: T. Percival (13)

    Boston drops one game behind Yankees

    ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -- Their starting pitcher struggled again, as did their closer, and the Anaheim Angels still found a way to win.

    Vladimir Guerrero hit a tiebreaking two-run double in the sixth inning Tuesday night as the Angels came from behind, then held on to beat the Boston Red Sox 7-6.

    "We did a lot of good things on the offensive side," Anaheim manager Mike Scioscia said. "Vlad came up with the big hit to give us a lead."

    Guerrero's double into the gap in left-center came against Bronson Arroyo (2-3) and snapped a 4-all tie.

    The Red Sox had taken a 4-1 lead against Bartolo Colon, who lasted just four innings. After falling behind 7-4, Boston closed within a run on Brian Daubach's two-out, two-run homer off Troy Percival in the ninth.

    Alfredo Amezaga, who came in as a defensive replacement at third for the ninth inning, ended the game with a spectacular diving catch of Kevin Millar's hard drive in foul territory.

    "Everybody came up big," said Anaheim's David Eckstein, who gave them a three-run pad by singling home a run in the seventh.

    He certainly came up big, going 3-for-5 and driving in two runs, including the tying run during Anaheim's three-run sixth.

    Arroyo gave up six runs -- five earned -- on eight hits. He struck out five, walked two and hit three batters.

    The win was just the Angels' second in seven games, but they've remained atop the AL West and their 31 wins match the New York Yankees and Cincinnati for most in the majors.

    "I can honestly say that is the best team we have played all year," Boston's Johnny Damon said. "Right now, they are the best team out there in both leagues.

    "They are a very scrappy team. They are a force to be reckoned with."

    The loss dropped the Red Sox a game behind the AL East-leading Yankees.

    "It was a frustrating night; we had a lot of chances early," Daubach said.

    Colon had another mediocre outing, giving up eight hits, but again didn't figure in the decision. He has won just one of his last seven starts, with two losses over that span.

    Signed to a four-year, $51 million free-agent deal last winter, Colon won three of his first four starts and had a 2.33 ERA before beginning to struggle.

    "Bartolo will have to do better than four innings," Scioscia said. "He needs to be more aggressive, establish his fastball. He may just be trying to do too much."

    Boston went up 4-1 with a pair of runs in the fourth, on consecutive RBI doubles by Manny Ramirez and Jason Varitek.

    Casey Kotchman doubled home one run in the bottom of the inning, and another run scored on Daubach's throwing error as the Angels narrowed the gap to 4-3.

    Ramirez, who had three hits, had an RBI double off Colon in the first inning. Jeff DaVanon's RBI single evened it in the bottom of the inning, then Millar led off the second with his fourth home run.

    Arroyo has been slumping, giving up 20 runs and 22 hits over 15 innings in his last three starts.

    "I threw some great pitches to Guerrero early on in the game," Arroyo said. "Then I left a bad slider right in the middle of the plate for him to hammer."

    Percival had blown three of his last six save opportunities and four overall this year. Last year, he had only four blown saves in 37 chances.

    "Percy's in a little rough spot right now, but we have complete confidence in him," Scioscia said.

    Game notes

    Eckstein ran his hitting streak to a career-high 16 games when he singled his first time up. ... Red Sox SS Nomar Garciaparra is expected to rejoin the Triple-A Pawtucket PawSox on Thursday to continue his rehab assignment. Sidelined all year with tendinitis in his right Achilles, Garciaparra played two games for Pawtucket before returning to Boston to work out and be evaluated. ... Red Sox OF Ellis Burks had had enough by the third time a beach ball bounced into the Boston dugout: he grabbed the ball and ripped it to pieces.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press