LOS ANGELES — The Angels' eight-game winning streak is over. Not because they weren't swinging the bats, though.
Their offense continued clicking, with Albert Pujols, Mike Trout and Howie Kendrick having multi-hit efforts, but the Angels lost 8-7 to the Dodgers in the opener of the Freeway Series that featured lots of momentum shifts on Monday night.
The Angels blew a five-run lead and tied the game at 7-all in the seventh only to see their season-high winning streak snapped.
"Hopefully we'll start a new streak tomorrow," manager Mike Scioscia said. "The process is what's important, and although we didn't win, there were a lot of good things that happened on the field. We've just got to carry that into tomorrow and start all over again."
Jerry Hairston Jr.'s RBI single scored the go-ahead run in the seventh inning for the Dodgers in the first of two games at Dodger Stadium before the series shifts to Anaheim for two more.
Trailing 8-7, the Angels had the potential tying run at first base with two outs in the eighth. Mike Trout flied out to right field on a hit-and-run play and Erick Aybar raced back to first. Adrian Gonzalez caught Andre Ethier's throw wide of the bag and lunged to tag Aybar as he ran past, doubling him off first.
Aybar slammed his helmet into the dirt after first base umpire Paul Emmel signaled out, believing Gonzalez had missed the tag. Aybar and first base coach Alfredo Griffin began arguing with Emmel as Scioscia rushed out to join them.
Scioscia pushed Aybar out of the way and engaged in an animated debate with Emmel. Scioscia retreated to the dugout, and the replay was inconclusive.
"From our angle — and we had a pretty good angle on it — it looked like there was a lot of daylight," Scioscia said. "Erick got a great jump, but the timing wasn't right where he could peek to see where the ball was hit. He made too big of a turn, but he got back to first base. Unfortunately, he didn't get the call."
The Angels tied the game 7-all in the seventh on Howie Kendrick's RBI single.
They took a 6-1 lead with three runs in the fourth on Aybar's RBI double, Trout's RBI triple into the left-field corner and Pujols' sacrifice fly to deep center.
"We're swinging the bats well, but if I had to point out one thing about the streak, it had to be the starting pitching," Trout said. "I think the ERA was like under 2.00. But they came out swinging the bats. They kept battling and putting great at-bats together."
Gonzalez went 4 for 4 and scored four runs for the Dodgers.
Hairston's big hit came the same day he was reinstated from the 15-day disabled list. He was 0 for 2 with a strikeout before he singled off Robert Coello (1-1) with two outs. After Matt Kemp struck out for the third time, Gonzalez singled and Scott Van Slyke struck out before pinch-hitter Ethier walked to set up Hairston.
Ronald Belisario (3-4) faced one batter in the seventh and got an inning-ending, double-play grounder from Hank Conger to earn the victory.
Brandon League pitched the ninth for his 11th save in 13 chances.
"During our streak we were routinely holding leads and doing a good job having guys come in and getting those outs," Scioscia said. "But we weren't able to do that. The guys coming out of our 'pen were behind in too many counts. Those guys did a great job with runners in scoring position and they hung on to win."
Kemp's hitting woes continued a day after he was left out of the starting lineup in a 5-3 loss to St. Louis. The Dodgers slugger was booed heavily as he went hitless in five at-bats with four strikeouts.
Van Slyke's tying RBI double capped a four-run fifth for the Dodgers before A.J. Ellis' sacrifice fly put them ahead 7-6 in the sixth.
The anticipated pitching duel between Angels lefty C.J. Wilson and Zack Greinke against his old team for the first time fizzled, with neither figuring in the decision.
Wilson gave up six runs and nine hits in 4 2-3 innings, struck out four and walked none.
"I made some bad pitches in that fifth inning, and that's the thing that's upsetting because I felt like I was in the driver's seat," he said. "I knew the game plan and I executed it for the most part, other than a couple of pitches to Gonzalez."
Greinke allowed six runs — four earned — and 10 hits in four-plus innings. He struck out two and walked one. Considered the top arm on the free-agent market last winter, the right-hander signed a $147 million, six-year deal to switch Los Angeles teams.
NOTES: Kendrick notched his 400th career RBI with a run-scoring double in the third. ... The clubs combined for 11 doubles, a Dodger Stadium record. ... The Angels fell to 20-31 on Memorial Day. ... The Angels are 13-6 in the past 19 games against the Dodgers and 9-4 in the past 13 in Los Angeles.
Copyright 2015, Deseret News Publishing Company