The move to acquire Zack Greinke is beginning to pay off for the LA Angels of Anaheim and the right-hander looks to keep his unbeaten streak intact in the finale of a three-game series versus the Detroit Tigers.
Greinke is 3-0 with a 1.66 earned run average and 16 strikeouts in his last three starts, spanning 21 2/3 innings, and fired seven innings of one-run ball in a 6-1 win at Oakland last time out Tuesday. He improved to 4-2 in eight starts with the Halos to go along with a 4.36 earned run average.
The right-hander, who is 13-5 in 29 starts with both Milwaukee and Anaheim this season, recently defeated Detroit on the road Aug. 24 in a 2-1 victory and yielded only a run in 7 2/3 frames. In 26 career games, 23 of which have been starts, against the Tigers, Greinke is 12-6 with a 2.74 ERA.
Detroit will counter with Anibal Sanchez. Much like Greinke, Sanchez was acquired in a deal and came over from the Miami Marlins. Even though he has given up two earned runs in his last three starts, Sanchez is 1-1 in that time. He last toed the rubber in a 3-2 loss to Cleveland and did not figure into the decision, permitting two unearned runs in six frames.
Sanchez is 2-4 with a 4.50 ERA in seven starts with Detroit and is only 2-5 in his past seven decisions. The righty is 7-11 in 26 starts with Miami and Detroit this season and faced the Angels the only time in his career last June 20 in south Florida. He held them to a run in seven innings in a 2-1 loss and did not figure into the decision. Sanchez had eight Ks with no walks.
Detroit was hoping ace Justin Verlander could cool down the surging Angels, but he was pelted for six runs and nine hits in six innings of last night's 6-1 loss. Omar Infante had a team-best two hits and drove in the lone run for the Tigers, who fell two games behind the Chicago White Sox for the AL Central lead and are 4 1/2 games off a wild card spot.
"It wasn't his night out there," Detroit manager Jim Leyland said about Verlander. "He wasn't very good and the Angels ambushed him early. They are a good team and are fighting for a playoff spot, same as us."
The Tigers have lost four of five games and are 0-2 on a 10-game road trip. They will visit the White Sox for four games after this set.
Angels starter C.J. Wilson allowed one unearned run in 7 2/3 innings of work for the win. Mike Trout homered and Albert Pujols went 3-for-3 with an RBI and two runs scored for the Angels, winners in five straight and 14 of 17 games.
"I tried not to do too much," said Wilson. "I just tried to get on the same page with the catcher and hit the glove. If you take the walks out of the game, I think this was my best game."
The Angels are even with Tampa Bay at two games off a wild card spot, and will host Oakland for four games on this homestand.
The Tigers have won five of nine matchups with the Angels this season.