Lefty C.J. Wilson can stay unbeaten for his career against Kansas City on Friday when the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim open a three-game weekend series with the Royals at Kauffman Stadium.
In his first year with the Angels after signing an offseason free-agent deal, Wilson was just 9-9 with a 3.83 earned run average in 27 starts through late August before kicking off a three-start win streak.
He defeated the Boston Red Sox to get to 10-9 with six innings of three-run ball on Aug. 29 in Anaheim, then followed it up with 12 2/3 innings in consecutive defeats of Oakland and Detroit while allowing three runs.
He's faced the Royals 14 times - including four starts - in his career and is 3-0 with a 2.61 ERA in 41 1/3 innings of work while allowing a .223 batting average.
Wilson last faced Kansas City on July 23 and allowed nine hits and three runs in 6 2/3 innings while getting a no-decision in the Angels' 6-3 win.
The Royals send veteran lefty Bruce Chen to the mound to face the Angels in his 200th big-league start.
Now 35 years old and nearly 20 years past signing his initial pro contract with the Atlanta Braves, Chen fell to 70-70 overall with a 5-4 loss to the Chicago White Sox in his last start on Sept. 8.
He last won three starts ago on Aug. 29 against Detroit, allowing just four hits in eight scoreless innings in a 1-0 defeat of the Tigers.
Chen has faced the Angels 20 times - starting 10 times - and has posted a 3-6 record and a 5.25 ERA in 73 2/3 innings.
He also got a no-decision in the July 23 matchup with Wilson after giving up three runs in 5 1/3 innings.
On Thursday in Anaheim, Jered Weaver spun seven stellar innings of two-hit ball, as the Angels used a six-run seventh inning to down the Oakland Athletics, 6-0.
Weaver (17-4) missed his last start due to a case of right biceps tendinitis, but showed no ill effects on Thursday as he struck out nine and walked just one en route to the victory.
"I felt great," Weaver said. "I was able to throw the ball the way I wanted to. I tried to locate and I was able to throw strikes."
The 29-year-old right-hander improved to 3-0 in four starts against Oakland this season and has thrown 18 consecutive scoreless innings against the A's.
Torii Hunter sparked the six-run seventh with a solo shot and then capped the frame with a run-scoring single, as the Angels salvaged the finale of this four-game set and moved within three games of the final AL Wild Card spot, currently occupied by the New York Yankees.
In Minnesota, Denard Span's double in the bottom of the 10th inning brought home the winning run for the Twins, as Minnesota salvaged the final game of a three-game series against the Royals, winning 4-3.
Trevor Plouffe tied the game in the bottom of the ninth with a solo homer, his 21st of the season. Glen Perkins (3-1) pitched two scoreless innings of relief to earn the win.
Francisley Bueno (1-1) was saddled with the loss. He came out to start the bottom of the 10th and gave up a leadoff double to Alexi Casilla before giving up Span's game-winner.
The teams split their initial six games of 2012, with the Royals taking two of three in Anaheim in April before the Angels took two of three there in July. Kansas City won the 2011 series, seven games to three.