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OC Register: Slumping Ian Kinsler among the hitters who produce on big night for Angels


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  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani slides into second after his RBI double against the Minnesota Twins during the third inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani slides into second after his RBI double against the Minnesota Twins during the third inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels Garrett Richards throws to the plate against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels Garrett Richards throws to the plate against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

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  • The Minnesota Twins’ Jose Berrios throws to the plate against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Minnesota Twins’ Jose Berrios throws to the plate against the Los Angeles Angels at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels Garrett Richards in the dugout between innings against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels Garrett Richards in the dugout between innings against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels Andrelton Simmons snags a grounder against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels Andrelton Simmons snags a grounder against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Garrett Richards talks with catcher Martin Maldonado after the top of the second inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Garrett Richards talks with catcher Martin Maldonado after the top of the second inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels Garrett Richards talks with Justin Upton in the dugout after the top of the second inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels Garrett Richards talks with Justin Upton in the dugout after the top of the second inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels Shohei Ohtani walks to the dugout after striking out swinging in the second inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels Shohei Ohtani walks to the dugout after striking out swinging in the second inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Ian Kinsler twists away from a pitch in front of Minnesota Twins catcher Mitch Garver during the second inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Ian Kinsler twists away from a pitch in front of Minnesota Twins catcher Mitch Garver during the second inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Angels’ Ian Kinsler watches the flight of his two-run home run during the second inning of Thursday’s game against the Twins at Angel Stadium. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Angels’ Ian Kinsler watches the flight of his two-run home run during the second inning of Thursday’s game against the Twins at Angel Stadium. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Ian Kinsler is greeted at home by teammate Andrelton Simmons in front of Minnesota Twins catcher Mitch Garver after his two-run home run in the second inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Ian Kinsler is greeted at home by teammate Andrelton Simmons in front of Minnesota Twins catcher Mitch Garver after his two-run home run in the second inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Ian Kinsler is greeted in the dugout by teammate Mike Trout after his two-run home run in the second inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Ian Kinsler is greeted in the dugout by teammate Mike Trout after his two-run home run in the second inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Justin Upton celebrates in the dugout after his solo home run against the Minnesota Twins in the third inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Justin Upton celebrates in the dugout after his solo home run against the Minnesota Twins in the third inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani hits an RBI double against the Minnesota Twins during the third inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani hits an RBI double against the Minnesota Twins during the third inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani is congratulated by third base coach Dino rebel after his RBI double in the third inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani is congratulated by third base coach Dino rebel after his RBI double in the third inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout throws his bat to the dugout after being hit by a pitch in the fifth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout throws his bat to the dugout after being hit by a pitch in the fifth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani looks at the Goodyear blimp while in the on deck circle in the fifth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Shohei Ohtani looks at the Goodyear blimp while in the on deck circle in the fifth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout smiles at first base in the fifth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout smiles at first base in the fifth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Garrett Richards reacts after giving up a three-run home run to the Minnesota Twins’ Brian Dozier in the sixth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Garrett Richards reacts after giving up a three-run home run to the Minnesota Twins’ Brian Dozier in the sixth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Minnesota Twins’ Brian Dozier rounds the bases past the Los Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols after his three-run home run in the sixth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Minnesota Twins’ Brian Dozier rounds the bases past the Los Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols after his three-run home run in the sixth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Garrett Richards reacts after giving up a three-run home run to the Minnesota Twins’ Brian Dozier in the sixth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Garrett Richards reacts after giving up a three-run home run to the Minnesota Twins’ Brian Dozier in the sixth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Garrett Richards holds out the ball for manager Mike Scioscia as he’s taken out of the game after giving up a three-run home run to the Minnesota Twins’ Brian Dozier in the sixth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Garrett Richards holds out the ball for manager Mike Scioscia as he’s taken out of the game after giving up a three-run home run to the Minnesota Twins’ Brian Dozier in the sixth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • Angel fans reach for a Max Kepler home run off of the Los Angeles Angels’ Jose Alvarez in the sixth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    Angel fans reach for a Max Kepler home run off of the Los Angeles Angels’ Jose Alvarez in the sixth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Minnesota Twins’ Max Kepler celebrates as he rounds the bases after his solo home run off of the Los Angeles Angels’ Jose Alvarez ties the game in the sixth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Minnesota Twins’ Max Kepler celebrates as he rounds the bases after his solo home run off of the Los Angeles Angels’ Jose Alvarez ties the game in the sixth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Kole Calhoun hits a sacrifice fly against the Minnesota Twins in the sixth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Kole Calhoun hits a sacrifice fly against the Minnesota Twins in the sixth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Minnesota Twins’ Max Kepler hauls in a sacrifice fly by the Los Angeles Angels’ Kole Calhoun in the sixth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Minnesota Twins’ Max Kepler hauls in a sacrifice fly by the Los Angeles Angels’ Kole Calhoun in the sixth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

  • The Los Angeles Angels’ Ian Kinsler celebrates in the dugout after scoring on a Martin Maldonado double against the Minnesota Twins in the sixth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

    The Los Angeles Angels’ Ian Kinsler celebrates in the dugout after scoring on a Martin Maldonado double against the Minnesota Twins in the sixth inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim on Thursday, May 10, 2018. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)

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ANAHEIM — A couple of the Angels’ struggling hitters showed some encouraging signs on Thursday night.

Ian Kinsler had a two-run homer among his three hits and Kole Calhoun hit a line drive that went for a tie-breaking sacrifice fly in the Angels’ 7-4 victory over the Minnesota Twins.

Meanwhile, Justin Upton hit a homer and Andrelton Simmons had three hits to remain hot, while Shohei Ohtani came back from a five-day hiatus from the starting lineup to hit another homer.

Calhoun needed something positive more than any of them. He didn’t have a hit, but solid contact and a clutch RBI will have to suffice for a player who has been in a miserable slump. He has six hits in his last 66 at-bats, a slump long enough that he had sat out four straight games before returning to the lineup on Thursday.

Kinsler, on the other hand, actually got his batting average going in the right direction, and not just his confidence.

After being moved from the leadoff spot on Wednesday, he opened the scoring with a two-run homer out of the No. 7 spot on Thursday. He added an infield hit in the fourth and a single in the sixth, in the middle of the tie-breaking rally.

Perhaps both Kinsler and Calhoun can take some inspiration from Upton, whose slump ended as quickly as the calendar turned from April to May.

Starting with his game-winning hit on May 1, Upton proceeded to go on a homer binge. His third-inning homer was his fifth of May, including four in the last five games.

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“He’s not missing pitches,” Manager Mike Scioscia said before the game. “I think Justin is real comfortable in the box. He’s seeing the ball well. All the things you talk about that add up to a good at-bat or squaring the ball up, he’s doing.”

As for Ohtani, he hadn’t even started as a hitter in any of the previous four games, because he pitched on Sunday and then the Angels went to Colorado, where they couldn’t use the DH. Ohtani still drove in a run with a double in the third – hitting the ball at 114 mph – and then he blasted a homer to left-center in the seventh. It was his fifth of the year.

The Angels strong offensive night came as starter Garrett Richards was dominant until a rough sixth.

After a scoreless outing in Seattle last week, Richards did not allow a run in the first five innings. He’d given up just two hits. In the sixth, though, it all got away quickly.

Ehire Adrianza led off with an infield single when his hard grounder skipped past Andrelton Simmons. After a strikeout, the Twins executed a hit-and-run with Joe Mauer at the plate, and his single got past a diving Zack Cozart into left field.

Richards then hung a slider to Brian Dozier with his 94th pitch of the night, and Dozier belted it over the left field fence for a three-run homer, ending Richards’ night.

José Álvarez entered to face Max Kepler, and he gave up a homer off the scoreboard in right field, tying the score, 4-4.

More to come on this story.

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