Angels edge A's in ace's debut

Angels edge A's in ace's debut

ANGELS 5, ATHLETICS 4
at Tempe, Ariz.
Monday, March 10

Angels at the plate: Left fielder Garret Anderson had his best day of the spring, with a single and a double. He scored a run on Howard Kendrick's double and drove one home with an infield out. Center fielder Torii Hunter continued his hot spring with a pair of singles, moving to 11-for-18 (.611) with nine runs scored and seven RBIs.

A's at the plate: First baseman Daric Barton lifted a three-run homer to right field against reliever Matt Wilhite, ending an 0-for-8 Cactus League start compounded by a hand injury that cost him eight games. Torrid second baseman Brooks Conrad walked, singled and scored a run. He's 12-for-26 (.462) in Cactus League play.

Angels on the mound: In his Cactus League debut after a bout of elbow stiffness, John Lackey reached his 30-pitch limit after getting the second out in the second inning. Lackey yielded two hits and two walks while striking out one. Nick Adenhart worked four shutout innings, giving up one hit, after Darren Oliver delivered two scoreless innings. Francisco Rodriguez pitched a perfect third inning, striking out one. K-Rod has retired all six men he's faced this spring, including three on Ks.

A's on the mound: Southpaw Dallas Braden yielded a run on two hits in two innings after retiring the side in order in the first inning. Right-hander Fernando Hernandez struck out Chone Figgins and Vladimir Guerrero in a scoreless third inning before yielding a run in the fourth on a pair of doubles. Alan Embree was roughed up for three runs on five hits in one frame.

Cactus League records: A's 8-5; Angels 7-4-2.

Up next: Angels right-hander Jered Weaver hopes to continue his strong spring showing on Tuesday when he faces Padres ace Jake Peavy in Peoria, Ariz., at 1:05 p.m. PT. The game will be broadcast on KLAA AM 830. Weaver has won both of his starts, giving up one earned run in five innings, striking out four and walking none while yielding two hits. With Lackey set back by early elbow stiffness and questionable for Opening Day in Minnesota, Weaver is a candidate for the honor, along with Jon Garland.

The A's will send left-hander Greg Smith out against Cubs ace Carlos Zambrano in Mesa, Ariz., at 1:05 p.m. PT.

Lyle Spencer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.