Series Preview: Los Angeles Angels Take On the Tampa Bay Rays in Anaheim


The Angels are coming off what is possibly their best road trip of the season. In 9 games, the Angels went 8-1 which included a sweep of both the division rival Mariners and the Milwaukee Brewers. Tonight the Angels try to keep on rolling against the Rays who they faced in Tampa Bay less than 4 days ago.

Aug 30, 2013; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Los Angeles Angels pitcher Jered Weaver (36) pitches in the 1st inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Here are the match-ups:

Game One: Garrett Richards vs. Chris Archer

Essentially, this is an exact repeat of the same match-up that went down last week between these two young arms. In that game, Chris Archer threw a gem, going seven strong innings allowing 1 run on just five hits. Meanwhile, Garrett Richards will look to bounce back from his worst start since returning to the rotation. Richards is 3 and 4 with an ERA of 3.38 since July 27th.

Game Two: Jason Vargas vs. Matt Moore

While fellow starting pitcher Garrett Richards had his worst start against the Rays since returning to the Angels starting rotation, Jason Vargas had his best start against Tampa Bay since returning from the disabled list. Vargas held the Rays to just 2 hits in 7 innings of work last Thursday for the victory. He’ll look to continue that success at home in Anaheim where he’s 5 and 1 this season with an ERA of 3.30.

This time the Rays will send out Matt Moore who did not pitch against the Angels in their last series. The young all-star has pitched well for the Rays this season allowing just 93 hits in over 121 1/3 innings of work. However, this will be Moore’s first start since returning from the disabled list where he was shelved for the entire month of August with elbow soreness. Look for the Rays to have a tight leash on Moore’s pitch count in this game.

Game Three: Jered Weaver vs. TBD

It’s been an up and down year for Weaver who has spent time on the disabled list and had some terrible outings including a 9-run shellacking earlier in August at the hands of the New York Yankees. But in Weaver fashion, he’s bounced back, pitching well in this last road trip where he gave up only one run in a combined 14 innings of work. Weaver will go up against the Rays for the first time this year in Anaheim where he’s posted a 2.59 ERA in 10 starts this season.

Game Four: Jerome Williams vs. David Price

Despite having an abysmal second-half this year, Williams was able to hold his own against the Brewers on Saturday where he went six innings and allowed three runs in a no-decision. He wasn’t dominate but it was by far the best outing he’s had since going 7+ innings and allowing just 1 run against Texas in late July.

Williams will face David Price, who has been solid in the second-half for the Tampa Bay Rays, holding batters to just a .585 OPS since the all-star break. To make things tougher for the Angels, Price has pitched better on the road in 2013, posting just a 2.88 ERA in starts away from Tropicana Field.