TEMPE, Ariz. — C.J. Wilson pitched into the sixth inning, and the Los Angeles Angels lost 5-3 to the Seattle Mariners in a spring game on Sunday.
Wilson was charged with four runs, two earned, and six hits in five-plus innings. The left-hander, who had a career-high 17 wins last season, struck out seven.
“I had some really close pitches that turned out to be balls,” Wilson said. “The last time I got through five innings in 71 pitches. If I get one or two calls today, I get through (five innings) on 70 pitches.”
Wilson got off to a slow start. Michael Saunders and Dustin Ackley each had an RBI single for Seattle in the first.
Seattle left-hander Roenis Elias made his first start and fourth appearance. He allowed one run and two hits in five innings.
Elias went 6-11 with a 3.18 ERA with Double-A Jackson in 2013. He thinks he can make Seattle’s banged-up starting rotation coming out of camp.
“Why not?” Elias said through an interpreter. “I’ve been waiting for the opportunity to show what I can do.”
Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon certainly didn’t close the door on Elias making the club.
“Everybody’s that’s in camp can win jobs,” McClendon said. “He’s still here. He threw strikes. He had a lot of poise and was down in the zone. He made quality pitches.”
Angels: Wilson felt he was much better after his four-hit first inning.
“I was upset with how the first inning went but I was happy with the way the rest of the day went,” Wilson said of his fourth spring start. “After that I was more aggressive toward the hitters and hit my corners.
Wilson was happy with his changeup, which he said got him a few strikes.
“Sometimes, C.J. In spring is trying to fine tune stuff but as the game brought situations to him he was up to the challenge,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.
Angels: Left fielder Josh Hamilton is slated to make his spring debut Monday when the Angels host San Francisco at Tempe. Both Hamilton and Scioscia think the slugger will be ready for the March 31 opener against Seattle.
Hamilton has been hampered by a sprained left calf muscle. If he returns Monday, his absence will be one day shy of three full weeks. The initial diagnosis stated he would be out at least two weeks.
The five-time All-Star and 2010 AL MVP struggled last season, hitting .250 with 21 homers and 79 RBI after signing a five-year, $125 million contract. He hit .285 with 43 homers and 128 RBIs in 2012 in his final season with Texas.
Mariners: Injured pitcher Taijuan Walker, out with shoulder inflammation, told reporters that he felt great after a 40-pitch bullpen session.