The Los Angeles Angels are playing meaningful baseball game tonight. That's a statement that feels like fans of this team haven't been able to utter in years. They've already made their move proving that they're not selling, and now is the time for them to perform like the playoff time they're striving to be.
The Angels swept the Tigers and have won eight of their last ten to improve to 54-49 on the season. They're six games back in the AL West making a division title unlikely, but they trail the third Wild Card spot by just three games. Who do they trail you might ask? The Toronto Blue Jays. Would you look at that? The Angels are in Toronto and are ready to face off against the Blue Jays this weekend in the Angels biggest series in years.
LA Angels must win series vs. Blue Jays to keep their momentum
Winning a series on the road against a good team is a tough task for anybody. The Blue Jays aren't 11 games over .500 by accident, they're a great team that will likely get even better at the trade deadline. Their pitching is great led by Kevin Gausman, and their lineup, while slightly underperforming, is potent with players like Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette leading the charge.
The Angels path to a postseason berth isn't an easy one. Even if they do win this series the odds are likely stacked against them thanks to a gauntlet of an August schedule. Still, the Angels must find a way to go into August on the right foot. They need to find a way to win this series.
The Angels opened their home schedule against these Blue Jays and lost two of three. They managed just three hits in their home opener and lost a one-run game, and they blew a 6-0 lead in the series finale and wound up losing an eventful game 12-11 in extra innings. Point being, all three games were winnable and the Angels threw the series away. That can't happen.
Trailing by 3 games, losing ground would be very disappointing at this point of the season. It won't end their season if they lost two of three, but losing instead of gaining a game would be tough to swallow. Getting swept would be a disastrous outcome that the Halos really cannot afford.
It'll be fun to see how Shohei Ohtani does on the big stage. It'll be fun to see how Lucas Giolito does in his Angels debut with pressure on him. It'll be fun to see if the youngsters like Zach Neto and Mickey Moniak step up in this huge series.
The Angels have struggled all year against good teams, particularly on the road. This is their chance to prove that they belong in the playoff race. It's time for them to step up and win a huge series.