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TOR@LAA: Santana strikes out 10 over eight innings

The Angels are 7-4 since losing five straight games. Albert Pujols hit his first home run of the season. Jered Weaver threw a no-hitter. And all signs indicate the team is turning things around.

Now they just need to give Ervin Santana some run support.

Santana takes the mound Wednesday against Minnesota hoping to end a historic streak. With a 4-0 loss to the Blue Jays on Friday, the 29-year-old right-hander became the first pitcher since at least 1974 to have his team shut out in five straight starts.

The next run the Angels score for him will be the first since April 8 -- his first start of the year.

He has only two quality starts and a 5.59 ERA, so he hasn't been outstanding. But the 0-6 record -- the first pitcher in Angels history to lose his first six starts -- might be a bit harsh, especially coming off an outing in which he went eight innings and struck out 10 while allowing only three runs.

"I'm not a hitter," Santana said after the game. "My position is just to pitch. I know we're trying the best we can to score runs, but it hasn't happened for me yet."

For Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, he's just looking forward to playing a different team. Wednesday's game will be the ninth between the Angels and Twins, and Gardenhire can't wait to say goodbye.

"I talked with some of the other coaches earlier [Tuesday] about how we haven't even played teams in our division [in] three [series]," Gardenhire said. "We'll be facing them nine times already. That's usually reserved for somebody in your division. So it's a little bit nuts. We'll be glad to face some other people."

Right-hander Carl Pavano, who is 2-2 with a 4.62 ERA, will be on the mound aiming to give Minnesota its second series win of the season. He'll hope for better results than his first outing against the Halos on April 11, when he allowed five runs on seven hits in 6 2/3 innings.

Angels: Trout doing the job at leadoff
• The Angels have won seven of 11 games since Mike Trout made his 2012 debut. Prior to his callup, Angels' leadoff batters combined for just three extra-base hits in 21 games. Trout has clubbed four extra-base hits in nine.

• Albert Pujols has driven in four runs the last three games after being limited to five RBIs over his first 27 contests.

Twins: What a relief
• Jared Burton has not allowed a run or hit in 10 consecutive appearances and 10 1/3 innings dating back to April 13, with two walks and 11 strikeouts.

• On Tuesday night, Scott Diamond made his 2012 debut and became the first Twins pitcher to throw seven shutout innings this season.

• Josh Willingham returned to the lineup Tuesday after missing Monday's game with a skin infection. He went 2-for-3 with a double, RBI, walk and a run scored.

Worth noting
The Twins are 3-12 in their last 15 games. They are 8-21 this season, and three of those wins have come against the Angels. Comments