Conger's pinch HR leads Angels past Dodgers 2-1

  • Article by: JOE RESNICK
  • Associated Press
  • March 30, 2013 - 11:30 PM

ANAHEIM, Calif. - Hank Conger pinch hit for Josh Hamilton and smacked a two-out homer in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Los Angeles Angels a 2-1 victory over the Dodgers on Saturday night in the teams' final exhibition game.

The teams agreed to end the game after nine innings if the game was tied. Yimi Garcia struck out his first two batters before Conger drove a 1-0 pitch a few rows into the right-field seats. It was his fourth homer of the spring and team-high 16th RBI.

Tommy Hanson gave up a run and three hits in 6 1-3 innings and struck out six in his fifth start this spring, finishing 0-2 with a 5.89 ERA.

Dodgers starter Zack Greinke threw 81 pitches over five innings, allowing a run and three hits with five strikeouts in his fourth spring start. The 2009 AL Cy Young Award winner, who signed a six-year, $147-million deal in December, gave up eight earned runs in 13 innings overall and was 0-1 after coming to camp with a sore elbow. He made 13 starts last year with the Angels, going 6-2 with a 3.53 ERA after he was acquired in a trade with Milwaukee on July 27.

Hanson walked his first batter, Carl Crawford, who stole second and scored on Matt Kemp's sacrifice fly.

The Angels tied it in the third when Chris Iannetta led off with a double, advanced on a wild pitch and came home on Mike Trout's groundout.

The Dodgers made a bid to regain the lead in the fourth, putting runners at the corners with none out. But Hanson struck Andre Ethier, retired Luis Cruz on a flyball to left field that was too shallow for Kemp to score on, and fanned Tim Federowicz. Angels reliever Jerome Williams snuffed out another Dodgers threat in the seventh by retiring Jerry Hairston Jr. on a popup with runners at second and third.

The Angels concluded spring training with a 10-20-4 record. Hamilton, who signed a five-year, $125 million contract as a free agent in December, hit .267 with two homers and 11 RBIs. Albert Pujols batted .333 with three homers and nine RBIs. Trout, last year's AL rookie of the year, hit .350 with two homers and 14 RBIs.

The Dodgers finished the spring schedule 13-20-3. Kemp, who continued to have shoulder issues at the start of camp, hit .250 with a homer and nine RBIs. He underwent surgery last Oct. 5 to repair a torn labrum and damage to the rotator cuff, which he injured while crashing into the into the center field wall at Coors Field on Aug. 27.

The Angels start their season Monday on the road against the Cincinnati Reds in the first interleague game ever played on opening day. The Dodgers also begin their schedule that day at home against the defending World Series champion San Francisco Giants.

NOTES: Clayton Kershaw, who will make his third straight opening day start for the Dodgers, has allowed just one home run by the Giants' entire 25-man roster. That was by Brett Pill, who is beginning the season on the DL after undergoing knee surgery on March 14. ... With the passing of longtime Angels public address announcer David Courtney on Nov. 26 at age 56, the Angels filled the vacancy with Michael Araujo, who has handled those duties for the Los Angeles Galaxy soccer club since 2002. ... Hamilton played in 38 games at Angel Stadium with the AL West-rival Texas Rangers and hit .260 with five homers and 19 RBIs in 150 at-bats. He also played at the "Big A" in the 2010 All-Star game. ... The Angels begin the season with a rotation of Jered Weaver, C.J. Wilson, Joe Blanton, Jason Vargas and Hanson. The Dodgers' rotation consists of Kershaw, Hyun-Jin Ryu, Josh Beckett, Greinke and Chad Billingsley, who will be eligible to come off the DL on April 6. ... Angels INF Luis Jimenez was named recipient of the club's annual Fred Haney Award as the outstanding rookie in spring training. ... Dodgers OF Yasiel Puig was named the winner of the franchise's Jim and Dearie Mulvey Award as their top rookie of the spring.

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