Dan Haren has a tough act to follow tonight when the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim start a four-game series with the Toronto Blue Jays at Angel Stadium.
Haren takes the hill tonight on the heels of Jered Weaver's no-hitter, trying to win his second straight start. After a shaky start to the year Haren has seemingly found his groove and was terrific on Saturday in Cleveland, as he held the Tribe to a run and four hits in eight innings to run his record to 1-1, while lowering his earned run average to 3.34.
Over his past three starts, spanning 22 innings, Haren has pitched to a 1.64 earned run average.
"We've gone a couple of times around the rotation now where we're getting the pitching that we feel we expected," Halos manager Mike Scioscia said. "We just haven't been able to match it with the offensive support to take advantage of it, but that pitching is really the hallmark of our club, and we need to keep getting those good starts after good starts."
Everything clicked for the Angels on Wednesday against Minnesota, as Weaver tossed the 10th no-hitter in franchise history, pacing the Halos to a 9-0 win.
With his family and friends looking on Weaver watched as nine-time Gold Glove winner Torii Hunter hauled in Alexi Casilla's liner to right to complete the majors' second no-hitter this season.
Weaver tipped his cap and waved to his family and friends in the crowd, while the rest of the jubilant home faithful broke into chants of "Weaver! Weaver! Weaver!"
"To have my family and friends here, it's an unbelievable night. It's surreal, it's an awesome moment," commented Weaver.
Weaver (4-0) completely overwhelmed Minnesota the entire night. He fanned nine while walking just one and threw 77 of his 121 pitches for strikes.
Although Weaver didn't need much help from the offense, the Angels proceeded to score nine runs -- all in the first four frames -- on 15 hits in the finale of a three-game set.
Howie Kendrick was 4-for-4 with a three-run home run and three runs scored for Los Angeles, which has won four of its last five games.
Albert Pujols, though, continued to struggle and was 1-for-5 and is now hitting a mere .208.
Toronto, meanwhile, begins a 10-game road trip after taking two of three from the Texas Rangers. In Wednesday's rubber match, Ricky Romero struck out six over eight strong innings to remain unbeaten as the Blue Jays rolled to an 11-5 win.
Romero (4-0) surrendered five runs on six hits and three walks, Yunel Escobar added three hits, including a three-run triple, and Edwin Encarnacion belted a three-run blast for the Jays, who have won four of their last five.
"That's a tough team, a tough lineup," said Romero about the Rangers. "I thought I did a pretty good job at throwing strikes and keeping them off balance."
Tonight, the Jays hand the ball to righty Brandon Morrow, who is 2-1 with a 3.03 ERA. Morrow won his second straight start on Saturday against Seattle, as he scattered five hits and struck out nine over six scoreless innings. He had allowed a run in 6 2/3 innings to win his previous start.
"He has this capability every time he steps to the mound," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said. "When you combine a well-above-average fastball with the command that he showed today in addition to three other offspeed pitches, he has the ability to not only take over the game, but dominate the opposition."
Morrow has faced the Angels 16 times (three starts) and is 0-3 against them with a 5.03 ERA.