Lugo strikes out career-high 12, stops Angels

Royals' Seth Lugo recorded 12 strikeouts and allowed only one run to lead his team to a 4-2 victory over the Angels on Mother's Day.

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Left-hander Patrick Sandoval struggled in the fourth inning as the Royals scored four runs and secured a 4-2 victory over the Angels on Sunday at Angel Stadium.

The Angels were held scoreless for the first six innings by Seth Lugo, until Willie Calhoun hit an RBI double to right. Lugo (6-1) maintained control and moved into a second-place tie in major-league wins.

Calhoun hit a solo home run over the right-field wall in the ninth, scoring the second run for the Angels and collecting his third hit of the game.

Salvador Perez doubled to left field to lead off the fourth inning, setting up the Angels’ disastrous inning.

Here are three takeaways:

Tough outing for Sandoval

Sandoval pitched 6 1/3 innings, allowing four runs and 11 hits while striking out three on 95 pitches.

Royals’ Freddy Fermin hit an RBI single to left field, which allowed Perez to score. The bases were loaded and Hunter Renfroe, who went 2 for 3, hit a two-RBI single.

Michael Massey had a sacrifice bunt which ultimately helped in scoring the fourth run of the inning.

The 27-year-old pitcher from Mission Viejo, California, has seen his ERA rise to 5.00 this season and has a 1-4 record in his last five starts.

Strickland, Garrett and Fulmer relieved Sandoval and held the Royals hitless for the final three innings.

Lugo dominates Angels

Lugo, who held the 7-9 hitters 0 for 12, allowed one run on five hits over eight innings. He struck out Niko Goodrum three times and had 12 total strikeouts.

The Angels missed an opportunity to score in the fourth inning with runners on the corners when Goodrum struck out swinging.

After Luis Guillorme’s lead-off single in the first, Lugo, who threw 112 pitches, retired the next eight batters. His ERA dropped to 1.66.

First-quarter update

Despite losing 17 of their last 23 games, the Angels are seven games behind the first-place Seattle Mariners in the AL West.

Angels manager Ron Washington said the team enduring a learning curve to start the season.

“I evaluate by growth,” Washington said. “(Jo) Adell is growing up. (Zach) Nato is growing up. Our whole pitching staff is growing up. (Logan) O’Hoppe is growing up. That’s how I evaluate.”

Washington said that losing a game can be an educational experience and that learning to win games early in the season is beneficial for the young players.

The Los Angeles Angels will host the St. Louis Cardinals in a three-game series starting Monday, with right-hander Jose Soriano (1-4, 4.32 ERA) facing Matthew Liberatore (1-1, 3.54).