NEW YORK (AP) — Tyler Chatwood finally got some runs and pitched seven scoreless innings, Erick Aybar hit a bases-loaded triple and the Los Angeles Angels beat the New York Mets 7-3 Sunday.
Vernon Wells hit a solo homer and two RBI singles for the Angels, who didn’t score a run for Chatwood in any of the right-hander’s three starts since May 27 but more than made up for it on a balmy, gorgeous afternoon in Queens.
Chatwood (4-4) allowed four hits and four walks in seven innings. He threw a career-high 117 pitches before Alberto Callaspo pinch-hit for him in the top of the eighth.
Los Angeles has won four of six and took two of three in New York to improve its interleague record since 2007 to 53-25, the best in baseball.
The Mets lost their first series since dropping two of three to Philadelphia in late May.
Jonathon Niese was ragged right from the start in this one, when Maicer Izturis dropped a bloop single into center field to lead off the game.
Niese (6-6) lost for the first time in five starts since May 24. In that span, he went 3-0 with five runs allowed and 25 strikeouts in 28 innings.
On Sunday, the left-hander was charged with four of the five runs Los Angeles scored against him, and gave up eight hits before he was relieved in the fifth when the Angels’ first three batters reached base.
The Angels began three of the first four innings with leadoff singles. They did most of their damage in the first two, though.
Aybar’s triple in the second made it 4-0. Los Angeles started the inning with singles by Mark Trumbo and Peter Bourjos before Izturis was hit by a pitch with two outs to load the bases.
In the first, Wells singled home Izturis with two outs after Izturis took second on a passed ball by Josh Thole. Wells added another run-scoring single in the fifth that chased Niese.
Mathis hit a solo homer in the sixth and Wells went deep in the seventh, giving him six home runs and 14 RBIs in his last 19 games.
Bobby Cassevah pitched a scoreless eighth, but gave up three runs in the ninth on singles by Jose Reyes and Carlos Beltran, and a groundout by Justin Turner. Scott Downs came on and retired pinch-hitter Scott Hairston to end the game on a close throw at first.
Notes: Howie Kendrick lost control of his bat on a swing during the seventh inning. It whirled into the stands and hit a seat. A fan grabbed it, but Kendrick asked for it back and security retrieved it for him, to loud boos. … All three Angels batters in the top of the third hit grounders to Reyes at shortstop. He made a diving stop on the grass and then got up to throw out Vernon Wells, made a routine-by-comparison backhand play on Kendrick and threw out Trumbo easily to end the inning. He was applauded warmly when he led off the bottom half of the inning. … In 2003, Reyes hit his first big-league homer against the Angels on Father’s Day. … Los Angeles tied the series with New York at six wins apiece. … New York hasn’t been shut out since May 4, against San Francisco and starter Tim Lincecum.