Shohei Ohtani, Masataka Yoshida: Angels Beat Red Sox 2-1

AP Photo/Alex Gallardo
Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani, left, talks with Boston Red Sox’s Masataka Yoshida during warmups before a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Monday, May 22, 2023.

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Mickey Moniak continues to make his case for being an every day outfielder for the Los Angeles Angels.

Moniak had two hits, including a home run in the eighth inning, as the Angels won for the fourth time in five games, beating the Boston Red Sox 2-1 on Monday night.

Moniak, the top pick by Philadelphia in the 2016 draft, was acquired from the Phillies at the trade deadline last year. He is batting .429 (12 for 28) with three home runs and six RBIs since being called up on May 12.

“It’s been special. I’ve always believed that it was in there, but you never know in this game,” Moniak said. “I’m just grateful to have the opportunity to be able to go out here every day, and I’m enjoying it. We’re winning baseball games and no complaints.”

Moniak drove a changeup from Kutter Crawford (1-2) over the wall in right field to lead off the eighth.

A changeup is a pitch that Moniak has had problems with in the past. He had a .229 average against the off-speed pitch from 2020-22, including a high chase rate outside the zone.

This season he is 4 of 10 when facing a changeup and has a better eye at the plate when seeing it, as his chase rate has been cut by over half.

“Where he’s at and the adjustments he has made in his swing, keeping his hands back, he got a good one to hit and he hit it out,” manager Phil Nevin said of Moniak.

Masataka Yoshida had two hits and an RBI for the Red Sox, who have dropped two straight after winning four in a row.

Angels’ right-hander Jaime Barria tossed five shutout innings in his first start in two years.

Chase Silseth (1-1) got the win, striking out two in two scoreless innings.

The Angels opened the scoring in the second. Brandon Drury drew a walk with one out, advanced to third on a base hit by Matt Thaiss and scored on Luis Rengifo’s grounder to short.

Los Angeles had the bases loaded with two outs in the inning, but failed to add any more runs when Mike Trout struck out. Trout and Shohei Ohtani each went 0 for 3 with a walk and two strikeouts.

Boston evened the score at 1-all in the sixth inning after Barria left the game. Connor Wong led off with a double off Aaron Loup and scored when Masataka Yoshida hit a chopper that bounced off the glove of Angels’ first baseman Jared Walsh for a base hit.

Yoshida’s RBI also snapped a 19-inning scoreless streak for the Red Sox.