Found June 03, 2012 on
Fox Sports West:
ANAHEIM, Calif. It looks like we're finally going to have a race in the American League West.
The Angels and Texas Rangers have played six times this season, and so far all they've determined is that they stand on equal ground. Each team has won three games, but they've really just begun.
There are still 13 games left between them, including six meetings in 13 days in late September. That's a lot of baseball, and a lot of time to establish which team is poised to win the American League West.
The Rangers took the series finale 7-3 on a bright Sunday afternoon at Angel Stadium, but the Angels won the first two games and made it clear this is indeed a two-team race.
"We won the series," Angels pitcher Dan Haren said. "We've got to look at the big picture. I don't think guys should be hanging their heads."
A sweep would have been nice, but the Angels had to be content with pushing first-place Texas off course a bit. The Rangers, who opened the season with a 15-4 record, are 17-18 since April 27. The Angels, who once trailed by nine games, are now within 4.
They did just enough to win on Friday and Saturday nights, but they have yet to sustain an offensive punch over an extended period. And maybe that's what's holding them back.
They rank 11th in the American League in runs and slugging and are 12th in on-base percentage. Unless they can put runners on base and drive them home, their pitching will have problems keeping games close.
"The one thing through this stretch that has not blossomed has been our offense," manager Mike Scioscia said. "We've been doing it really with just a minimal amount of offense, but we've been pitching well, playing great defense, and our bullpen has been lights out. That's a nice combination to have, but we still need that offense to take a step forward."
The Angels stranded runners at second and third base in the sixth inning and left the bases loaded in the seventh when Rangers reliever Alexi Ogando got Albert Pujols to fly out to left field a 99-mph fastball.
"He opened up that carburetor for Albert," Scioscia said of Ogando, who has no trouble reaching 100 mph on the radar gun. "He turned it loose there."
Haren labored through five innings, throwing 104 pitches and giving up two runs. The Rangers kept the pressure on offensively and finished with 14 hits, including a two-run homer by Nelson Cruz off reliever Bobby Cassevah that went an estimated 484 feet and landed on the grassy slope near the palms and rocks in left-center.
"Any time you throw 100 pitches in five innings it's going to wear you down," Haren said. "You're not going to be at your best if you're throwing 25, 30 pitches an inning."
He wasn't, but the Rangers don't go down easily to anyone. They out-hit the Angels in the three games by a 30-18 margin, although Josh Hamilton was kept in check (2 for 13, no RBIs).
"Their 7, 8, 9 hitters could probably hit 3, 4, 5 in a couple of National League lineups," Haren said. "They never let you breathe. You've got to be at your best the whole way through."
The Angels weren't, at least not Sunday, but they know they're certainly capable of staying relevant the rest of the way. They don't see the Rangers again until late July, and by then both teams will know just how good they are and how good the other team is.
"A series is just your report card on how did in a three- or four-game set," Scioscia said. "We need to carry a little momentum with a win and turn the page on a loss. We'll turn the page on this one."
With a lot more pages left in the season, the story is far from finished.
BEST OF MAXIM
Los Angeles Angels manager Mike Scioscia claims the milestone snuck up on him, but 2,000 games takes a lot of sneaking. Scioscia became the 53rd man in baseball history to manage 2,000 games Monday night. He's the 16th manager to handle 2,000 games uninterrupted with one team and the ninth manager in American League history to manage that many games for one team. Seven of the...
By Andre Castillo - AngelsWin.com Columnist
Most Valuable Angels: Pitchers
Welcome back everyone to Inside the Numbers. This week we’ll look
at the most valuable pitchers on the Angels staff, using Fangraphs.com’s Wins
Above Replacement (WAR) metric.
Name - WAR
1.<span style="font: 7.0pt "Times New Roman";"> Jered Weaver...
With Weaver hitting the DL we are guaranteed a new number one in the rankings! Will it be the big bad Trumbomber or the Trout that Saved Anaheim?
As always, the rankings are based on a player's overall season performance with a weight on recent performance.
+1Last Week: 2
Mark Trumbo - The Legend of the Trumbomber grows with...
Los Angeles Angels fans in attendance at Saturday night's game against the Texas Rangers set a Guinness World Record for most cowboy hats worn at a single event.
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Black cowboy hats were given out to the fans in order to set the record, with the only catch being that the fans had to wear the hats for 10 minutes in order to make the record...
Santana had yet another pathetic start.Just as I foretold.Vargas pitched well enough for a W. Just as I prophesied.The Angels were embarassed by the Mariners.Just as we all expected.Mariners 6 Angels 8
So Santana got roughed up again, or I should say he beat himself down with the walks, once again. 7 runs and 6 walks in less than 5 IP, this is really nothing...
ANAHEIM, Calif. Even the strangest, most inexplicable games are going the Angels' way.
This wouldn't have happened when things were going badly, but it's happening now. Opposing teams make mistakes and pay a price; the Angels make mistakes and find a way to survive.
Their karma is running good right now. Even a bad play here and there doesn't hurt them.
Two months into the season, the Angels finally let the Texas Rangers know they are here.
While the Rangers got off to the best start in baseball, the Angels struggled through one of the most disappointing six-week stretches to start a season in franchise history. They finally came to life in late May. But the revival was built on wins against AL West also-rans Oakland and Seattle...
C.J. Wilson pitched six scoreless innings against his former teammates, Alberto Callaspo singled home the go-ahead run in the seventh and the surging Los Angeles Angels beat Texas 3-2 Saturday night to pull within 31/2 games of the AL West-leading Rangers.
Bobby Cassevah (1-0) got two outs for the victory, the Angels' 10th in 11 games. Ernesto Friere, the fifth Angels pitcher...
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -- C.J. Wilson pitched six scoreless innings against his former teammates, Alberto Callaspo singled home the go-ahead run in the seventh and the surging Los Angeles Angels beat Texas 3-2 Saturday night to pull within 3 games of the AL West-leading Rangers.
Bobby Cassevah (1-0) got two outs for the victory, the Angels' 10th in 11 games. Ernesto Friere, the...
By David Saltzer, AngelsWin.com Senior Writer
There’s nothing like coming to the ballpark, especially when the Angels are winning. The mood is better. The hot dogs are tastier. The drinks are more refreshing.
With the Angels preparing to sweep the Rangers, the mood everywhere is much better. It’s spread throughout the clubhouse and into all aspects of the stadium. It’s...
Aaaaaaaaand, no sweep for the Angels. Aw, shucks. That's too bad. It sure would've been nice, but it just wasn't meant to be.
Even without the sweep, this series was still a resounding success for the Halos. Obviously, they won the series, but the big thing they did was get in the Rangers' heads. Not only did Texas play some self-admittedly tight baseball...
ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -- Munenori Kawasaki had a three-run double and John Jaso had three hits, leading the Seattle Mariners to an 8-6 victory over the Los Angeles Angels on Monday night.
Mariners starter Jason Vargas (7-4) gave up four runs and nine hits in 5 2-3 innings. He struck out a season-best eight.
Kyle Seager homered and Seattle had 10 hits overall. But the Mariners had...
I know its really cool to watch videos and hear stories about players like Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jackie Robinson and Ty Cobb, among other great players to ever play the game. At least I didn't have the pleasure of watching them play.
For me, a lot of the greatest players I grew up watching ended up being accused of PED's use, and a couple of them coke abuse. So its a huge...
Texas Rangers (31-21) @ Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (27-26) Pitching Probables: TEX – Yu Darvish (7-2, 3.25 ERA) LAA – CJ Wilson (6-4, 2.77 ERA) Game Info: 7:05 PM PT; TV - Fox Sports West, MLB Network...
The three most recent press releases to appear at MLB.com:
Bryce Harper and Mike Trout being the best rookies in baseball? Predictable. Preordained, even. Jim Johnson having a 0.78 ERA and a 17-for-17 record in save opportunities? Not as predictable. Both are why we watch.