Final

Series: Game 1 of 3

LA Angels leads 1-0 (as of 6/23)

Game 1: Monday, June 23
LA Angels3Final
Washington2
Game 2: Tuesday, June 24
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Washington3
Game 3: Wednesday, June 25
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Washington5

Angels 3

(47-30, 25-12 away)

Nationals 2

(30-48, 15-24 home)

    8:15 PM ET, June 23, 2008

    Nationals Park, Washington, D.C. 

    123456789 R H E
    LAA 000010020 3 8 1
    WAS 001000100 2 6 2

    W: J. Lackey (5-1)

    L: S. Rivera (3-4)

    S: F. Rodriguez (31)

    Anderson, Lackey help Angels nip Nationals

    WASHINGTON (AP) -- John Lackey knew he had only himself to blame when his throwing error in the seventh inning gave Washington a one-run lead.

    No need to worry. His Angels were playing the bumbling Nationals, after all.

    Garret Anderson's eighth-inning single drove in the go-ahead run and Los Angeles took advantage of a series of Washington miscues to rally for a 3-2 victory on Monday night.

    "I made a dumb play and the guys picked me up," Lackey said.

    Lackey (5-1) was dominant for most of the game, allowing six hits and two runs -- one earned -- in eight innings while striking out six and walking one. He's lasted at least seven innings in all eight of his starts and dropped his ERA to 1.65.

    He got himself into trouble in the seventh, when the Nationals had a runner on third with one out. Lackey caught a line drive back to the mound, but his throw to third in a double-play attempt was wild, allowing the go-ahead run to score.

    "I was pretty upset with myself after that one. It wasn't very smart," Lackey said. "The whole thing was not a good play. Let's keep it real. I don't have anything positive to say about that play."

    Washington gave the gift right back, though.

    Chone Figgins led off the inning with a bunt, and Pete Orr, who had come on in the eighth as a defensive substitution at third base, charged the ball. Orr collided with reliever Saul Rivera (3-4), allowing Figgins to reach first with what the official scorer ruled a single.

    Figgins then stole second and advanced to third on catcher Jesus Flores' errant throw. Figgins came home on another error, when second baseman Felipe Lopez was unable to field Erick Aybar's grounder.

    "I'm not going to overanalyze it," Washington manager Manny Acta said. "He should have had the ground ball and he didn't catch it."

    Aybar advanced to second on the error. One batter later, Anderson singled him home with the eventual winning run.

    "We just don't give up," Figgins said. "Our pitching staff keeps us in the ballgame."

    Washington's comedy of errors squandered a strong performance by Jason Bergmann, who gave up one run on six hits in seven innings, striking out six without a walk. Bergmann had lost his last four starts but had to settle for a no-decision in this one.

    "That's the way it happens sometimes," Bergmann said. "Seldom do you ever have an inning where it's just a clean hit here, a clean hit there for one run. Usually there's an error or something involved. That's just the way baseball is."

    Bergmann was pulled in the seventh inning for pinch-hitter Paul Lo Duca after Willie Harris tripled. Lo Duca hit the liner to Lackey that led to the error, allowing Harris to dash home.

    After the error, Lackey came back to the dugout with a message for his teammates: "Pick me up, fellows."

    "It shows a lot about the character of the team," he said.

    Harris had given the Nationals a 1-0 lead with a leadoff home run to right field in the third inning, his fourth of the year.

    The Angels scratched out a run in the fifth. Casey Kotchman led off with a single and advanced to third on Howie Kendrick's double, and Jeff Mathis drove Kotchman home with a sacrifice fly.

    After the Angels took the lead in the top of the eighth inning, Lackey retired the side in the bottom of the inning. Francisco Rodriguez pitched the ninth for his major league-leading 31st save, moving the Angels to 15-9 in one-run games.

    "You have to have the confidence you have enough to win," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "You have to be able to turn the page on mistakes."

    Game notes


    Nationals first baseman Nick Johnson will undergo a diagnostic arthroscopy on his right wrist Tuesday at the Mayo Clinic. Johnson has been on the DL since May 15 with a tendon tear in his right wrist. "There's a possibility he might be out for the year," Washington general manager Jim Bowden said before Monday's game. ... The start of the game was delayed 70 minutes by rain. ... Angels outfielder Vladimir Guerrero extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a single in the sixth inning.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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