The Angels have made it clear that they are waiting for Kendrick to hit his way into a full-time job. The first opportunity came Sunday, with a left-handed starter in Casey Fossum presenting the perfect opportunity for the right-handed-hitting Kendrick.

He batted eighth and went 3-for-4 with two RBIs, doubling during a two-run fifth inning and adding an RBI double to center field in a three-run sixth.

In the eighth, he worked the count to 2-and-1 before pulling a base hit to left field against Chad Harville (0-2), enabling pinch-runner Erick Aybar to score from second base. Jose Molina followed with an RBI double for an insurance run and Francisco Rodriguez pitched a perfect ninth for his 22nd save.

Kendrick batted .115 in his first stint with the Angels earlier in the season. When asked if the difference is in his approach, Kendrick broke into a wide smile and spoke like a professional hitter.

"I learned last time to stop chasing all the junk," he said. "Maybe I was too excited, but I got away from what I do and started going after changeups and breaking balls instead of making the pitcher come to me in the strike zone. Once you do that, you start seeing fastballs again."

"When he came here, he expanded his strike zone and began swinging at some pitches I don't think he normally would," Scioscia said. "It's only one game, but he looked like he returned to his approach."

Kendrick's production helped the Angels (46-45) remain hot, improving to 11-1 in July and keeping them within 1½ games of first place in the AL West.

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