Los Angeles Angels Probable Pitchers & Starting Lineup vs. Houston Astros, July 14

Los Angeles Angels v San Diego Padres
Los Angeles Angels v San Diego Padres / Orlando Ramirez/GettyImages

Los Angeles Angels Probable Pitchers & Starting Lineup vs. Houston Astros, July 14

The second half is finally here, and the Los Angeles Angels will be looking to break out of the massive slump they were in headed to the all-star break. The Angels have lost five straight and nine of their last ten to drop under .500 on the season. They'll look to break even tonight in the beginning of a tough homestand.

Probable starting pitchers

Shohei Ohtani takes the ball for the Angels tonight as he looks to help the team get off to the good start they need in the second half. Ohtani's first half didn't end the way he wanted on the mound as he allowed five runs in five innings, walking four and giving up two home runs in a loss in San Diego. Ohtani has faced the Astros twice this season on the mound and the Angels lost both of those starts. Hopefully tonight yields a different result.

The Astros will begin their second half with right-hander J.P. France. The 28-year-old rookie has been great for an Astros team that has needed him to be with their pitching injuries in the 11 starts he's made. He has a 3.26 ERA and has allowed three runs or fewer in all but two of his outings. He faced the Angels in Houston and delivered seven brilliant innings, allowing just one run on three hits. He also held the Angels without a baserunner through five before Luis Rengifo homered in the sixth. Fortunately the Angels found a way to win that start.

Los Angeles Angels starting lineup

1. Zach Neto - SS
2. Shohei Ohtani - P
3. Taylor Ward - LF
4. Mickey Moniak - CF
5. Luis Rengifo - 3B
6. Mike Moustakas - 1B
7. Hunter Renfroe - RF
8. Chad Wallach - C
9. Michael Stefanic - 2B

Houston Astros starting lineup

1. Mauricio Dubon - 2B
2. Alex Bregman - 3B
3. Kyle Tucker - RF
4. Jose Abreu - 1B
5. Chas McCormick - CF
6. Bligh Madris - DH
7. Corey Julks - LF
8. Jeremy Pena - SS
9. Martin Maldonado - C

Which LA Angels player needs to bounce back today?

Hunter Renfroe went hitless in five at-bats in Los Angeles in the last game the Angels played prior to the all-star break and is a guy the team desperately needs to get going in the second half. He was awesome in April but has struggled since. Hopefully the streaky Renfroe gets hot starting tonight.

Which LA Angels player will be the X-factor in today's game?

Zach Neto is back after a month on the sidelines and is leading off. The Angels have desperately missed him, and it's awesome to see him back in the lineup. He was on fire before landing on the IL, recording seven hits in 15 at-bats in four games with three home runs. Hopefully tonight he can get on base in front of Ohtani and help win the Angels an important game.