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LAA@TB: Callaspo cranks a solo jack in the fourth

ST. PETERSBURG -- Two aces in a manager's hand is the baseball equivalent of a full house. Angels skipper Mike Scioscia can count his blessings -- and, he hopes, his winnings.

Dan Haren, demonstrating the luxury of co-aces in his partnership with Jered Weaver, weaved 7 2/3 superb innings on Wednesday to dispatch the Rays, 5-1, and take both games of a brief two-game set in front of 11,836 at Tropicana Field.

Weaver had tied the winless Rays in knots on Tuesday night, and Haren kept them entangled with his own assortment of fastballs, cutters, splits and breaking balls.

"I don't like following him," Haren said through a wide smile when asked if he benefits from watching Weaver work. "He's too good. I texted him that last night after I left, 'I'm sick of pitching after you.' He makes it look pretty easy, too."

In a more serious vein, Haren alluded to the impact of prime-time starters working in a consistent rhythm.

"It's fun when starting pitchers go one after another," Haren said. "That's when things start to roll. Weaver started it off. He looks as good as I've seen him."

Combined, Haren and Weaver have yielded three earned runs across 27 2/3 innings.

Third baseman Alberto Callaspo continued to swing a hot bat with a solo homer, his second, and a single, and Mark Trumbo gave a demonstration of a full body of skills, not just the ability to lose baseballs with his power.

Trumbo produced three hits, scoring a run and driving in another, and Bobby Abreu and Jeff Mathis also delivered run-scoring doubles in support of Haren (1-0).

Right-hander Jeremy Hellickson dropped his season debut for the Rays despite overpowering stuff that resulted in 10 strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings.

Through 14 2/3 innings in his two starts, Haren hasn't walked a hitter while giving up two runs on 10 hits, with 12 strikeouts.

"I probably had better stuff in Kansas City, but I only made one or two mistakes today," Haren said. "I went with a lot of cutters and splits with eight lefties in their lineup. They never really got a rally going."

Asked about Haren's pinpoint artistry, Scioscia said: "That's been a huge part of his success his whole career. It put him in an elite class of pitchers -- not only he doesn't walk guys, but he makes you hit his pitch."

The 0-5 Rays have scored seven runs total and are batting .136. B.J. Upton's solo homer was all of their offense on Wednesday.

"We're not swinging the bats bad at all," Upton maintained. "Just nothing's going our way right now. We all want that first win. I think we might be pressing a bit to get it, but we're fine."

Referencing a Hall of Fame third baseman, Rays manager Joe Maddon suggested his players "try easier," rather than harder.

"Read that from George Brett many years ago, a pretty good baseball player," Maddon said. "[He said] that there are times when you actually have to try easier."

Trumbo extended himself fully over the course of his first career three-hit game. He singled to left, center and right and made two athletic plays defensively.

"It's my job to show people I'm not just a one-dimensional player," said Trumbo, who led the Minor Leagues with 36 homers last season at Triple-A Salt Lake. "I've worked hard at it, but it's hard to shake labels.

"With the opportunity [afforded by Kendrys Morales' absence], maybe I can show I bring a little more to the table than people think."

After backing Johnny Damon to the wall in his first at-bat against Hellickson, Trumbo followed Callaspo's homer in the fourth with a single to center but was stranded at third after Mathis' ringing double to left.

"I thought it might have enough," Trumbo said of the drive Damon handled, "but I didn't crush it."

In the sixth, Trumbo lashed a two-out single to left and stole second. As Hellickson departed, Mathis greeted Adam Russell with a double off Matt Joyce's glove in deep right for a 3-1 lead.

With two outs in the home half of the sixth and Sam Fuld at third after a leadoff double and steal, Trumbo ranged to his right to handle a Ben Zobrist grounder and flipped accurately to first across his body. Haren, also on the move, managed to hit the bag ahead of Zobrist to save a run.

"The guy kind of ran into my shoulder and gave me a charley horse," Haren said. "Mark made a very nice play. He really looked good over there."

Scioscia expressed concern, but Haren -- one of the game's most durable pitchers -- was back on the mound in the seventh and eighth.

Kevin Jepsen retired Manny Ramirez to close the eighth, and Jordan Walden had another perfect ninth with an assist from Trumbo, who made a diving stab of Zobrist's bullet.

Facing Joel Peralta in the eighth, Vernon Wells reached on Felipe Lopez's error at third, took third on Callaspo's single and scored when Trumbo drove a 3-2 pitch to right for another hit.

Kendrick, retired only twice in nine at-bats in the series, has scored as many runs (seven) as the Rays this season batting in the No. 2 spot between Maicer Izturis and Abreu.

A .417 hitter with a .517 on-base percentage, Kendrick walked in the first and scored when Abreu laced Hellickson's first pitch into the right-field corner for a double.

Torii Hunter's RBI single in the ninth following singles by Izturis and Kendrick to make it 5-1.

Hellickson surrendered three earned runs on six hits with two walks and 10 strikeouts over 5 2/3 innings. Comments