Game No. 16: Los Angeles Angels (7-8) vs. Detroit Tigers (7-5)

By Jose Serrano

Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

The Angels begin a crucial nine-game road trip in the motor city; the first of five consecutive series’ against legitimate playoff contenders. The good news is that the Halos won all six meeting with the Tigers last season, limiting Detroit to four runs in their only visit to Angel Stadium. The bad news? Pitching and clutch hitting continue to be a problem as we found out in losing two of three to the Oakland A’s earlier this week.

Tonight, Jered Weaver looks to carry Wednesday night’s momentum into the series opener. He’s struggle thus far but is due for an ace-caliber performance.

Pitching Matchup– Jered Weaver (0-2, 5.79 ERA) vs. Drew Smyly (1-0, 0.00 ERA)

There aren’t many positives one can take from Weaver’s previous performances. A lack of velocity is obvious, but he isn’t locating pitches and hitters are taking notice. Weaver is averaging a career-high 3.4 walks per nine innings, allowing seven in just over 18 innings of work.

Last Saturday, he walked four New York Mets and gave up four earned runs en route to a no decision. Were it not for the Angels’ ninth-inning rally, the team’s ace would have another loss to account for.

Drew Smyly is trying to solidify his status in Detroit’s five-man rotation. After starting 18 games in his rookie season he primarily pitched out of the bullpen last year, going 6-0 in 63 appearances. Due to rain outs and off days Smyly hasn’t started a game in 2014. His sole win came as a reliever, pitching three scoreless innings against Baltimore on April 4.

Walk offs:

  1. Weaver is 3-4 with a 4.97 ERA in 10 career starts against Detroit.
  2. The Angels have won nine straight against the Tigers dating back to Sept. 7, 2012.
  3. This week’s home stand marked the first time since 1975 that the Angels hosted four extra-inning games.

Forecast: Mostly cloudy, temperature in the mid-30s

TV: 4:08 p.m. PT, FS West, FS Detroit

Radio: KLAA 830, WXYT 1270 (Detroit)