Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

C.J. Wilson Takes Two-Game Skid into Opener Against Twins

Major League Baseball’s best home team over the last month won a three-game set with Texas last weekend, outscoring the division rival 15-7. With their first sweep of the Rangers since 2008, the Los Angeles Angels are 8-1 at Angel Stadium in June and have won 12 of their last 14 home games.

It’s as if Yu Darvish and Matt Shoemaker traded places Sunday Afternoon. Texas’ ace-among the AL leaders in strikeouts and ERA-was shelled for four runs through six innings. Shoemaker, meanwhile, improved to 5-1 with a one run, six strikeout performance.

The right-hander’s undefeated mark and 3.65 ERA since being recall from Triple-A Salt Lake only solidify his status in the team’s starting rotation.

Raul Ibanez’s release late last week only emphasized C.J. Cron’s impact in limited playing time. The 24-year-old first baseman homered for the third straight game in Sunday’s win raised his slugging percentage to .536. Instilling more confidence in Cron was a result of Mike Scioscia’s decision to start him throughout the series.

Pitching Matchup- C.J. Wilson (7-6, 3.34 ERA) vs. Kyle Gibson (6-5, 3.25 ERA)

The run support C.J. Wilson enjoyed early in 2014 is gone. He’s received 2.6 runs per game over his last five starts dating back to a May 28 loss in Seattle. Wilson hasn’t done much to help his cause in the span, posting a 4.11 ERA while averaging three walks per. The good news for Wilson comes in an Angels offense that’s on a roll after dismantled Texas.

After suffering back-to-back losses, the left-hander limited Cleveland to one run on three hits in seven frames last Thursday. Wilson didn’t pick up a win- Ernesto Frieri gave up walk-off grand slam- but yielded his lowest run total since his complete game shutout of Tampa Bay May 17.

Wilson is 4-3 with a 4.25 ERA lifetime against the Twins, though he hasn’t faced the Twinkies since 2012.

Kyle Gibson carries a 22-inning scoreless streak into Anaheim. Because of Minnesota’s lackluster offense, Gibson has settled for a no-decision in three scoreless outings his year, including a masterful shutdown of the Red Sox last Wednesday. The last run Gibson allowed a run was June 2.

Walk offs:

  1. Josh Hamilton is batting .400 over the last nine games.
  2. Joe Mauer holds a .071 batting average against Wilson, the lowest off a pitcher he’s faced at least 20 times.
  3. Minnesota won five of six meeting last season, including two at the Big A.

TV: 7:05 p.m. PT, Fox Sports West, Fox Sports North (Minnesota)

Radio: KLAA 830, 96.3 K-TWIN, TIBN

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Tags: C.j Cron C.J. Wilson Los Angeles Angels

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