Angels Welcome Red Sox for Weekend Series
Winners of eight of their last nine games, and coming off of an incredible comeback against June’s NL Pitcher of the month and a perfect closer, the Angels will now open their doors to the Boston Red Sox for the final three games of a six-game homestand. The last time the Angels played the Sox, Boston took two out of three games from the halos, and I don’t need to remind anybody about how much it pains me when the Red Sox beat the Angels.
This will be the final time these two teams play each other in the Regular Season thanks to the new scheduling system and the odd number of teams in both the American and National League. A series win for the Angels would split the season series between the two teams, but those aren’t nearly as much fun as sweeps. Josh Hamilton is riding a nine-game hitting streak coming into the series, and boasts a .320/.388/.552 slash line against the Bearded Baldies. After finally being a hero, this could be when Angels fans get to see the Josh Hamilton they have been waiting to see.
Game 1: C.J. Wilson vs. Felix Doubront 7:05 PM PST
C.J. was much better in his last start than he was in his prior start in Detroit. In Houston he allowed only one run over seven innings and struck out 10 batters. He is 5-2 lifetime against the Sox with a 2.85 ERA in 20 appearances against Boston.
Doubront is coming off of a June month where he posted a 2.75 ERA across six starts, finishing off the month giving up two runs in 6.2 innings against the Blue Jays. In his lone start against the Angels, he took the loss and is 0-1 with a 3.86 ERA against the Halos.
Game 2: Ryan Dempster vs. Toobie Announced 7:05 PM PST
Dempster has been Joe Blanton-like over his last six starts, and has had almost no success against the Angels in his career. He currently sports a 1-2 record with a crazy-high 9.15 ERA against the halos.
Toobie has no record of ever doing anything anywhere ever in baseball. More research is necessary. Update later.
Game 3: Jered Weaver vs. John Lackey 5:05 PM PST
This is the game of the series. Jered Weaver has looked better in each of his last two starts, and was even hitting 91 MPH on the radar gun in his last start against St. Louis. He is 1-1 in his last three starts with a 2.70 ERA. Only 14 K’s in 20 innings, but that is something that we have learned to live with in regards to the Weave.
After having Tommy John Surgery last year, Lackey has come back sleak, svelt and pitching like the pitcher that earned a five-year $85MM contract from Boston after the 2009 season. He is 6-5 with a 2.85 ERA on the season, and over his last three starts he is 2-0 with a 2.05 ERA. He’s not Boston’s Ace, but he has been pitching like it.
As always, the Red Sox should be wary of Mike Trout. Especially since Trout owns a career line against them of .415/.478/.585 in 46 plate appearances. Another player to watch – although maybe just in the game that Dempster is pitching – is Albert Pujols. Pujols owns a career line against Dempster of .350/.461/.833. I think it’s safe to say that Pujols owns Dempster.
The series gets underway tonight with the Angels sitting at 41-44. Only three games under .500 and making some noise in the middle of the AL West, Consider this being put on notice Rangers and Athletics fans.