Abreu atones for big error with winning single for Angels

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- No one in an Angels uniform felt worse than Bobby Abreu when the tying run scored in the top of the ninth, largely because he had dropped a flyball earlier.

No one felt better than Abreu did in the bottom half, after he atoned for his mistake with the game-ending hit.

His opposite-field RBI single with two out against Kelly Downs gave Los Angeles a 6-5 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Wednesday.

"I wanted to be in that situation," Abreu said. "We played a very good game, and I'm the one who screwed up in the ninth with that flyball. It was my fault. I called for it late. I don't have to blame anybody but myself. You don't want to lose a game like that, so coming back from that and winning the game was perfect."

Mike Napoli led off the inning with a double to left-center, and Downs (1-4) retired Maicer Izturis on a grounder to the first base as Napoli took third. The left-hander intentionally walked pinch-hitter Juan Rivera and Erick Aybar before shortstop Alex Gonzalez turned Howie Kendrick's grounder into a force at the plate with the infield in.

But Abreu worked the count to 2-2 and slapped the next pitch to left field. The run snapped a scoreless string of 13 2/3 innings by Downs, the longest by a Blue Jays reliever this season.

"There's no room for error with the intentional walks," Downs said. "I made a pitch to get the first ground ball, then I made a decent pitch to Abreu and he hit it. He and I have faced each other a lot and had a lot of battles. I wanted action on that pitch and not go 3-2, especially with a guy like him and the eye he has at the plate. He's a professional hitter."

Joel Pineiro bounced back from one of the worst outings of his career with six innings of two-hit ball and left with a 5-3 lead, the result of Hideki Matsui's tiebreaking two-run homer. But the Angels' bad-news bullpen failed again.

Kevin Jepsen gave up a two-out RBI double to Edwin Encarnacion in the seventh, and closer Brian Fuentes (2-1) surrendered a one-out RBI double in the ninth by John Buck on a 2-2 pitch. The run was unearned because of the miscue by Abreu.

Pineiro struck out six and issued four walks, three of them in the second inning when Toronto scored its first three runs.

"It's weird, because I wasn't getting hit around. It was just the walks," Pineiro said. "(Catcher) Jeff Mathis was telling me: `What are you doing? The ball is moving so much.' I couldn't control it. Maybe I was just guiding it so much. But after that inning I kind of settled down and all of my pitches came around. Then I was back to being myself again."

The only hits against Pineiro were Buck's two-out infield single up the middle and a two-run single by Jeremy Reed that followed a bases-loaded walk to Encarnacion. Reed started his second straight game in place of left fielder and leadoff hitter Fred Lewis, still plagued by a bunion on his left foot.

"It was very difficult to see because of the shadows," Reed said. "I haven't faced him enough to know if he was effectively wild. I was just trying to stay aggressive and hit it hard somewhere. Getting deep in the count and not being able to see was not a position I wanted to be in, but I still found myself in that position."

Blue Jays starter Brandon Morrow threw 96 pitches over five innings, allowing three runs, three hits and four walks while striking out six. He was replaced by Rommie Lewis, who faced only two batters. Switch-hitting Kendry Morales greeted the rookie left-hander with a single and Matsui drove his sixth home run far back into the right field seats to give the Angels a 5-3 lead.

Game notes
Fuentes' blown save was his third in nine opportunities. ... The Blue Jays are 4 for 35 with six walks in bases-loaded situations. ... The Blue Jays did not get more than four hits against any of the Angels' starting pitchers in this three-game series, including Joe Saunders and Ervin Santana.