2) The LA Angels got subpar starting pitching in the games they lost
The Angels had their pitching set up where you had in my opinion, their three most trustworthy pitchers going in Shohei Ohtani, Patrick Sandoval, and Griffin Canning. They had this good fortune while also missing one of Houston's best arms in Hunter Brown.
Unfortunately, the series opened with Reid Detmers on the mound and he had another 2023 Detmers type of start. He looked solid at first allowing one run in four innings of work, but a three-run fifth did him and the Angels in.
It's hard to win games when your starting pitching allows four runs in five innings of work. He didn't get help from Gio Urshela, but Detmers once again showed his inability to pitch to hitters for a third time as Houston reached base in three of their five at-bats seeing him for the third time and he again showed the inability to limit the damage. Houston tied the game at two, but Detmers couldn't hold them there.
Shohei Ohtani was matched up against Framber Valdez for the second time this season and was once again outpitched by Houston's southpaw. Ohtani allowed five runs on nine hits in six innings of work. He walked just one batter, but never seemed to be in command. He struck out only six, and gave up two more home runs.
Patrick Sandoval is another Angels pitcher who was victimized by some poor defense, and he wasn't the one to give up the Alex Bregman Grand Slam, but six runs in 3.1 innings of work is obviously putrid. He allowed eight hits and walked three.
Overall, these three starting pitchers allowed 15 runs in 14.1 innings of work. You'll rarely win when your starting pitchers give up more runs than innings pitched.
In the game the Angels did win, Griffin Canning allowed just one run in six innings of work. This allowed Phil Nevin to use their good relievers as they weren't behind, and they were able to grind out a win. You always need good starting pitching to win baseball games consistently.