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BOS@LAA: Hamilton delivers walk-off home run in 11th

ANAHEIM -- Saturday's 9-7 walk-off victory over the Red Sox at Angel Stadium may have very well been a microcosm of Josh Hamilton's first half with the Angels.

There were frustrating and "miserable" moments, such as his eighth-inning error and first four at-bats, which featured a pair of groundouts, a fly out and a strikeout.

However, he then showed his talent and resiliency while giving the Angels their seventh comeback in their last 10 wins. It was also the ballclub's first win when trailing by four or more in the ninth inning since May 27, 2005.

Not only did Hamilton win the game with his 12th home run of the season when he hit a Craig Breslow fastball for a two-run shot in the bottom of the 11th, but he also brought the Angels within one with a two-out RBI single in the ninth inning.

"It was a good feeling to start that way, trying to do a little too much earlier in the game at the plate, and then relax and just do what I've been doing the last couple of weeks," Hamilton said.

While Hamilton continued to hit the way he has been -- extending his hitting streak to 11 games -- the Red Sox lost for just the third time when leading after eight innings.

"I was trying to get it down and away," said Breslow. "It didn't, obviously. Regardless of the way he's swinging, he's a dangerous bat. Trying to get the ball down and away, maybe get him to roll over or swing and miss and open up potentially coming back in late. I didn't get it out there. You saw what happened."

While Hamilton was the hero -- just as he was on Thursday when his two-run home run tied the game in the ninth -- it took a crazy ninth inning before he was even presented an opportunity.

The Angels began the ninth trailing, 7-3, but Chris Iannetta's single -- his third of the night -- provided the club with its first baserunner. Following a flyout, the Halos were down to their final out, but the next five batters reached base.

"We kept playing baseball," manager Mike Scioscia said. "I don't know if you're ever going to predict scoring four runs with two outs in the ninth, but our guys, they're playing hard."

J.B. Shuck singled, Mike Trout was hit by a pitch, Albert Pujols hit a two-run single, Hamilton followed with an RBI single of his own and the Angels tied the game when Brandon Snyder -- playing third, which is not his natural position -- committed a throwing error after fielding a Howie Kendrick ground ball, allowing Collin Cowgill to score the tying run.

"You never know what can happen when the ball goes in play," Cowgill said. "It was a great at-bat by Howie to get to that point, fouling off some tough pitches and battling. That's the great thing about baseball, anything can happen when you put the ball in play."

Although the Angels have won nine of 11, Saturday's game was far from perfect, as the club committed three errors and Jerome Williams was unable to record an out in the fourth inning.

"We have to play at a high enough level," Scioscia said. "We were able to do enough things offensively to overcome those, but it's certainly not what we need on the defensive end."

Williams, who was pitching on two days' rest after he allowed seven runs in 1 2/3 innings on Wednesday against the Cardinals, lasted just three-plus innings and allowed five runs (four earned) on seven hits.

Since rejoining the rotation on June 22, Williams has posted an ERA of 8.47, allowing 17 runs (16 earned) in 17 innings.

The Red Sox got to Williams early as they scored a run in each of the first two innings. Jacoby Ellsbury, who singled and extended his hitting streak to 16 games, scored an unearned run in the first when he stole third base and then trotted home on Iannetta's throwing error. In the second, Brock Holt's sacrifice fly drove home Daniel Nava.

Williams retired six in a row to end the second and get through the third, but in the fourth, everything fell apart.

"They took advantage of the sinkers away and they just drove the ball the other way," Williams said. "They got hits off those pitches. I didn't try to move their feet or anything, just tried to stay in one spot and they got hits off of them."

While the Red Sox would bat around in the inning, Williams faced the first five batters and didn't record an out.

Mike Napoli drew a walk to lead off the inning, Nava followed with a double before Jarrod Saltalamacchia drove them both home with a double.

Holt then hit a ground ball to first base that should have been the first out, but Pujols elected to throw to third to try to get Saltalamacchia, who slid in safely. Jose Iglesias followed with an RBI single to end Williams' night.

But just as Williams has picked up his team on several occasions throughout the season, Hamilton and the rest of the Angels picked up Williams. Comments