Bartolo Colon takes aim at his third win of the young season this evening when the Oakland Athletics continue a four-game set with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium.
Colon was terrific on Friday in Seattle, as he scattered three hits over seven scoreless innings to run his record to 2-1, while lowering his earned run average to 3.72.
All three of his outings this season have come against the Mariners.
"When you're facing a team three times in a row, it's tough," A's pitching coach Curt Young told the team's website. "I don't care what kind of stuff you have. Bartolo, after the first time through, you saw a definite mix of some changeups and breaking balls. It was effective for him."
The 38-year-old righty, who won a Cy Young Award while pitching for the Angels in 2005, has faced his former team 18 times and is 8-5 with a 3.69 ERA.
Los Angeles, meanwhile, will counter with righty Ervin Santana, who has been awful in the early going. After allowing five runs in 5 2/3 innings of his season debut, Santana was roughed up by the New York Yankees on Friday to the tune of five runs and six hits in five innings, dropping him to 0-2 on the year to go along with a 7.71 ERA.
"I just have to go out and have better location with my pitches," Santana said. "I need to have my fastball hitting the corners. That's the key."
Santana could get himself righted tonight, as he is 13-3 lifetime versus the A's with a 2.00 ERA in 23 games, 21 of which have been starts.
Oakland evened this series at a game apiece on Tuesday, as Yoenis Cespedes' two-run single capped a four-run eighth inning to propel the A's to a 5-3 win. Coco Crisp and Josh Reddick added an RBI each in the eighth for Oakland, which snapped a three-game slide.
Brian Fuentes (1-0) tossed a scoreless inning of relief to earn the win, while Tyson Ross scattered seven hits and two runs over a six-inning start for the Athletics.
Grant Balfour worked around a Vernon Wells home run in the ninth inning to record his third save of the year.
Kevin Jepsen (0-1) allowed all four runs in the eighth inning to suffer the loss. Dan Haren got the start for the Angels, who lost for the fifth time in seven games, and gave up one run on five hits through 6 2/3 innings.
"I felt good, minus the home run," said Haren. "I was in command the whole game."
The A's won 11 of their 19 matchups with the Angels last season. However, the Angels are 12-6 in the last 18 meetings at Angel Stadium against the A's.