Opening Day: Los Angeles Angels (0-0) vs. Seattle Mariners (0-0)

By Jose Serrano

Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports.

Some say Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year. If you’re a baseball fan, however, Opening Day comes pretty close. The Los Angeles Angels have waited six long months to get the 2013 season’s bad taste out of their mouths. Tonight, their journey back to the postseason begins against a revitalized Seattle Mariners team.

Pitching MatchupJered Weaver (0-0) vs. Felix Hernandez (0-0)

Weaver is looking to prove doubters wrong in 2014. There are growing concerns declining strikeout rate loss of speed on pitches. After all, Weaver hasn’t thrown over 200 innings since 2011 and he won only 11 games last year, although a majority of last season’s woes may be due to two month stint spent recovering from a fractured left elbow.

The good news is that Weaver faces a familiar opponent in the Seattle Mariners tonight. Over the last three years he’s pitched 60 innings against the division rival, striking out 44 batters to the tune of a 2.40 ERA.

Hernandez is coming off a 12 win season in making his seventh Opening Day starts for Seattle. It would be his eight in a row were it not for Erik Bedard’s start in 2008. Unlike Weaver, Hernandez has proven to be a workhorse over the last six years, averaging 226 innings and 216 strikeouts in that span.

A lot of that success hasn’t come against the Halos. “King Felix” has a 3.52 ERA against the Angels over the last three years. Even more telling is the fact that he has a 1-1 record in his last seven starts at Angels Stadium.

Walk offs:

  1. Robinson Cano has a .400 lifetime batting average against Weaver.
  2. Mike Trout batted .414 through 20 Cactus League games.
  3. Weaver sold his Newport Coast home for $1.6 million during the offseason.

Forecast: Cloudy skies early, showers late

TV: 7:05 p.m. PT, Fox Sports West, ESPN2

Radio: 710 ESPN, KLAA 830