Series Preview: Angels Off to Oakland After Dropping Three of Four in Seattle

Apr 28, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Jason Vargas (60) pitches to the Seattle Mariners during the 1st inning at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

SEATTLE – The April trend continued for the Los Angeles Angels, dropping three of four games against the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field Sunday afternoon.  Seattle’s Jason Bay and Michael Morse each hit solo home runs to edge the Halos 2-1 in the final game of the series.  Jason Vargas (0-3, 4.85) took the loss after looking sharp through seven innings.  The win vaulted Seattle to 6.0 games back in the AL West standings – a division that appears largely wide-open excluding the Texas Rangers (who lead all of baseball with an impressive 2.92 ERA).  Who says Arlington is a “hitters” park?

Halo fans are becoming increasingly frustrated with a club that is struggling to find consistency – in particular in the pitching department where the Angels have posted a horrendous 4.82 ERA – putting them 29th in all of baseball.  The Halos are now 9-15 (.375) and 6.5 games back of the division leading Texas Rangers.   And those painful 15 losses didn’t come at the hands of the red-hot Boston Red Sox (who are now 18-7 thanks to a familiar name – RBI producing Mike Napoli).  The Angels dropped key games against the Minnesota Twins, Houston Astros, and Seattle Mariners.  Not exactly teams favored in Las Vegas to win the 2013 World Series.

And if it isn’t the pitching, it’s the hitting that’s struggling.  The Big Three (Trout, Pujols, and Hamilton) combined to go 0-12 on Sunday – striking out a dismal five times.  These three will have to find their groove if the Angels have any chance of playing .500 baseball or better this season.

The Halos travel to Oakland for the first of a three game series beginning tonight.  Tommy Hanson (2-1, 4.24 ERA) is scheduled to take the hill after coming off the bereavement list.  He will face the Athletics’ Dan Straily (1-0, 2.70 ERA) at the Coliseum.  The “Moneyballers” are 14-12 (.538) and only 2.5 games back from the Rangers.  The Los Angeles Dodgers and Angels have both proven this season that a high payroll doesn’t always have a direct correlation to wins.  At least not yet.

Notes:

-MLB.com reporting the Angels traded Minor League catcher Chris Snyder to the Orioles for Minor League right-hander Rob Delaney on Sunday.

-LHP Sean Burnett placed on the 15-day DL due to forearm irritation.

Topics: AL West, Jason Vargas, Los Angeles Angels, Seattle Mariners

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