TORONTO — If the Angels come up short of October once again, the best that could come out of this season is they uncover a few players who could be parts of the future.
Parker Bridwell, and to a much lesser extent Kaleb Cowart, are doing what they can to show they are two such players.
Bridwell gave up one run on three hits in 7-1/3 innings in the Angels’ 7-2 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Friday night, snapping the team’s three-game losing streak.
Cowart, who just this week was promoted to show if he can be the Angels everyday second baseman, had three hits and a spectacular play in the field.
Cowart has eight hits in 17 at-bats in five games in the majors this season, including one last month. It’s obviously far too small of a sample to make any conclusions, but he certainly hasn’t looked as overmatched as he did during the previous two years, when he hit .176 in limited opportunities.
Bridwell’s body of work is much more significant.
Since the Angels picked the 25-year-old off the scrap heap – acquired for cash or player to be named from the Baltimore Orioles in April – Bridwell has a 2.83 ERA in 54 innings. The Angels are 8-1 in his starts.
He’s now 3-0 with a 2.37 ERA in starts at Yankee Stadium, Fenway Park and the Rogers Centre. All three are hitter-friendly environments that house powerful lineups.
Bridwell sliced through the first 11 Blue Jays hitters before walking Josh Donaldson in the fourth. He then gave up his first hit, a Justin Smoak double. He got Kendrys Morales on a flyout to strand the runners.
The only other baserunner the Blue Jays managed against him was a Russell Martin single in the sixth.
Bridwell got offensive and defensive support from Cowart.
In the second, Cowart’s two-out single into left drove in the game’s first run. He added a fourth-inning hit when his bouncer ticked off pitcher J.A. Happ’s glove. He lined a double in the ninth.
Cowart’s best moment was in the field. In the third, he ranged over…