The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim will try to steal a series on the road as they square off with the AL West-leading Texas Rangers this evening in the rubber match of a three-game series in Arlington.
The Angels were able to snap a five-game losing streak to Texas on Saturday after Kendrys Morales broke a seventh-inning tie with a sacrifice fly. Mark Trumbo knocked a two-run homer out of the park in the fourth for Los Angeles in a 4-2 victory.
C.J. Wilson became the first pitcher to make back-to-back starts in nearly a decade after he pitched just one-third of an inning on Friday due to a rain delay. Wilson received a no-decision after allowing two runs on five hits in 5 2/3 innings Saturday.
"It was a great bounce-back win. A long night last night, you can't say enough for what C.J. did," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.
Los Angeles will send its lights-out starter Jered Weaver (5-0) out to the mound tonight to face the Rangers in an attempt to build on Saturday's success. Weaver has struggled in recent history versus Texas in Arlington, going 1-6 with a 5.35 ERA in his last 11 outings. However, the towering right- hander is off to an excellent start this season and is looking to become the first pitcher in the American League to start 6-0 this season.
The Angels played strategic baseball to bounce back from Friday's 10-3 loss.
"They were playing small-ball and they executed," Rangers starting pitcher Matt Harrison said.
Albert Pujols has not had the same overall success as Wilson since joining the Angels this season. The three-time former National League MVP showed improvement last night as he went 1-for-3 and drew his first walk since April 25.
"Every time he feels like he's inching closer and feeling more comfortable, he's taking a half-step back," Scioscia said.
Angels outfielder Mike Trout had his five-game hitting streak snapped in the win last night.
This series started a seven-game homestand for the Rangers.
Josh Hamilton continued to amaze on Saturday. He extended his hitting streak to 12 games by belting yet another home run, this time a solo shot. The Angels were able to strike out the star outfielder in all three of his other at-bats. Hamilton leads the American League with a .402 batting average and is leading the majors with 18 home runs and 41 RBI.
The Rangers' offense, which stumbled on Saturday, has been exceptional this season. Elvis Andrus saw his 11-game hitting streak come to an end yesterday. Adrian Beltre, Michael Young, and Craig Gentry have all been tough outs for opposing pitchers as they work down the order.
Texas will send out Neftali Feliz (2-1) to the mound tonight. The 24-year old right-hander was impressive his last time out, surrendering just four hits and one earned run to Baltimore while striking out eight Orioles on Tuesday. Feliz has held opposing batters to a .189 average so far in 2012.
The Rangers have only had one losing streak this season.
The Rangers won 12 of 19 over the Angels last season, though was just 5-4 against them in Texas.