NEW YORK -- Every pitcher gives up runs. It's part of baseball. It happens. It just hadn't happened to Ernesto Frieri since he joined the Angels. In the ninth inning of Sunday's game against the Yankees, it finally did.
Mark Teixeira hit a two-run homer against Frieri. Those were the first two runs the reliever had given up in 26 1/3 innings.
The last time Frieri gave up a run was April 30 against the Milwaukee Brewers, when he was a member of the San Diego Padres. Since coming to the Angels, Frieri became the first reliever in team history to not allow a run before the All-Star break with a minimum of 10 innings pitched. He also became the first pitcher in the Majors to strike out more than 45 batters and not allow a run in more than 25 innings after first joining a new team.
After the game, Frieri wasn't broken up over his scoreless streak being snapped. He knows it's a part of the game and was just glad the runs he allowed didn't cost the team.
"I'm human. I knew that was going to happen. I always tell myself and say 'God, please, whenever I give up a run, don't let that run cost us the game,' and that was exactly what happened," Frieri said. "This is not just about me, it's about winning, and we won. [[Scott Downs] had my back and then [Kevin Jepsen] had [Downs'] back. This is about the team, it's not about Ernie Frieri, Albert Pujols or Jered Weaver. It's about everybody."
It had been a week since Frieri last took the mound. He faced three batters, walked two, failed to record an out, and gave up the homer to Teixeira. But he didn't make excuses for why he didn't pitch well.
"I won't give you any excuses, because I feel good, actually," Frieri said. "Velocity was there, but I couldn't find my release point. I don't know why."
Manager Mike Scioscia was optimistic that his usually reliable reliever will bounce back his next time on the mound.
"We need Ernie," Scioscia said. "He's been having a sensational year for us. He'll get right back on that horse with his next opportunity."
Walden lands on DL with right biceps strain
NEW YORK -- Command issues stripped Jordan Walden of the closer's role in late April. Now, a right biceps strain has landed the Angels' reliever on the 15-day disabled list.
Walden had been pitching with a "small" amount of pain in his right arm for a while. Then, while making an appearance right before the All-Star break last Sunday, his biceps flared up. Walden tried to throw a bullpen session in New York on Friday, but, he said, "It just wasn't the same. There was something in there. My arm was in knots."
So, on Sunday, the Angels placed Walden on the 15-day disabled list and called up outfielder Kole Calhoun to fill his spot on the roster.
"It just flared up to the point where I just couldn't do it, couldn't deal with it," Walden said. "My biceps is just very, very weak.
"My shoulder was weak, and then my biceps started going."
For Tuesday, the Angels will have to make another roster move to call up their starting pitcher against the Tigers -- likely Garrett Richards -- and it'll probably be Calhoun or infielder Andrew Romine going down.
The Angels don't believe Walden's injury is serious. He'll go through normal rehab for now, is expected to travel with the team to Detroit after Sunday's series finale against the Yankees, and Walden -- eligible to be activated as early as July 24 -- expects to start throwing again "soon."
"It doesn't appear to be [serious], but we want to make sure we get on top of it," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.
"I think every pitcher's going to pitch with a little bit of inflammation. There's not a pitcher in that room that feels 100 percent, and Jordan's pitched with some things from time to time. But when it gets to the point where you don't feel you can comfortably execute your pitches, you need to take a little step back."
With Walden gone, it'll be up to LaTroy Hawkins, Jason Isringhausen and Kevin Jepsen to step up as a bridge to Scott Downs and Ernesto Frieri.
Walden, 24, was an All-Star who posted a 2.98 ERA and racked up 32 saves in his rookie year last season. This year, though, he was removed from the closer's role in late April and continued to be erratic as one of Scioscia's middle relievers, compiling a 3.86 ERA, a 1.57 WHIP and a 1.94 strikeout-to-walk ratio.
"I should be fine," Walden said. "It's just a little bump in the road."
Haren ready to make rehab start, possibly Monday
NEW YORK -- Dan Haren came out of his Saturday bullpen session "really well" and is tentatively scheduled to make a rehab appearance for Class A Inland Empire on Monday, Angels manager Mike Scioscia said prior to Sunday's series finale against the Yankees.
Haren was placed on the DL with a stiff lower back on July 5, but has successfully completed two bullpen sessions and, if all goes well, looks primed to miss only one turn through the rotation.
The Angels will have to fill Haren's spot on Tuesday -- probably with Garrett Richards -- but barring a setback, he could be ready to pitch next Sunday against the Rangers. For now, though, the Angels will take it one step at a time. Scioscia said the rehab appearance would be "Monday or Tuesday," but Monday is the most logical day.
"If he threw a [bullpen session], he's ready to pitch two days later," Scioscia said. "It seems like that's the case, but you don't want to lock a guy in. You want his body to tell you when he's ready. So, we're anticipating Monday, but we'll see."
Haren experienced some uncharacteristic struggles through this season's first half, posting a 4.86 ERA through 17 starts before revealing he had been dealing with back pain since the start of the regular season. His health could go a long way in determining how active the Angels are in trade talks for another starter this month.
Haren will pitch no more than four or five innings in his rehab appearance, throwing 60-70 pitches max.
"We're taking it one step at a time," Scioscia said. "I don't think we need to project [how many rehab outings he'll need]. He's going to tell us how he feels. His performance will tell us exactly where he is -- how the pitches are coming out of his hand, how he's executing his pitches and things like that."
Hunter out of starting lineup for second straight day
NEW YORK -- Right fielder Torii Hunter was held out of the starting lineup for a second straight game on Sunday because of tightness in his right groin.
Even though Hunter was held out, he is optimistic about the situation.
The 36-year-old participated in agility drills, and manager Mike Scioscia said Hunter was available to pinch-hit in the series finale against the Yankees. Scioscia expects Hunter to return to the lineup Monday against the Tigers.
The tightness in his right groin occurred during Friday's loss against the Yankees. Hunter said it happened when he was chasing down Russell Martin's game-winning hit in the Yankees' eighth-inning rally.
When asked how healthy he is, Hunter said he was almost full strength.
"I'm 95 percent," Hunter said. "Never 100, so I say 95."
Calhoun arrived to New York on Sunday for his second callup with the Angels, but his bags didn't. Calhoun showed up in the Angels' clubhouse dressed in a suit, with no bat, no glove and no uniform. The 24-year-old outfielder flew from Reno, Nev., to Phoenix, to Philadelphia, to Newark, N.J. His bags, he thinks, stayed in Phoenix, getting re-routed to Detroit. So, left-hander C.J. Wilson lent him a glove for the day.
Mark Trumbo homered for the sixth time against the Yankees this season, one day after snapping a streak of homers in five straight games against them. With that, Trumbo has tied the club record for homers in a season against the Yankees, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Lee Thomas (1962) and Brian Downing ('88) also did it.
Mike Trout has scored at least one run in seven straight games, making him just the second Angels player to accomplish the feat over the last three years (Hunter did it twice). Over his last 21 games, Trout is batting .407 (35-for-86).
Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.