Found June 15, 2012 on
Fox Sports Arizona:
The Diamondbacks are facing the Angels in Southern California for the first time in more than a decade. A familiar face will be waiting for them on the mound.
Angels starter Dan Haren is set to face the Diamondbacks for the first time since being traded nearly two years ago in Friday night's series opener.
Arizona helped Los Angeles (34-30) a bit Thursday with an 11-3 win over AL West-leading Texas, trimming the Angels' deficit in the division -- once as large as eight games -- to three. Los Angeles has closed the gap with a 16-5 stretch, winning three of Haren's four starts in that span.
The Angels won just once in his first nine outings of 2012.
Haren (4-6, 3.73 ERA) was a little shaky Saturday in Colorado, yielding four runs and 10 hits in 5 13 innings, but still got credit for the Angels' 11-5 victory. The right-hander was much sharper in his previous three outings, posting a 1.29 ERA with 23 strikeouts and two walks over 21 innings.
The Diamondbacks (31-32) should certainly be familiar with that kind of dominance from him.
Haren went 37-26 with a 3.56 ERA in two-plus seasons in the desert and was named to two All-Star teams. With Arizona in last place in the NL West in 2010, however, the team decided to unload his massive contract and send him to the contending Angels just before the non-waiver trade deadline as part of a five-player deal.
Los Angeles didn't make the playoffs that season or last year, and in an attempt to dethrone Texas in the West it acquired C.J. Wilson and Albert Pujols this past winter.
Pujols is starting to come around after a slow start, batting .441 with a homer, seven doubles and seven RBIs during an eight-game hitting streak to raise his average 28 points to .264. He has put up similarly gaudy numbers in his last 11 games against the Diamondbacks, batting .409 with three home runs, five doubles and 15 RBIs.
Torii Hunter has also been instrumental to the Angels' recent surge, batting .412 with four homers and 10 RBIs in his last eight contests, bumping his average up 36 points to .271.
Los Angeles is opening a nine-game homestand against NL teams after beating the cross-town rival Dodgers 2-1 on Thursday to cap a 5-1 trip.
This will be the Diamondbacks' first trip to Angel Stadium since taking two of three in 2001, and they arrive in Southern California feeling good having won six of eight to move within a game of .500.
Arizona pounded out 14 hits Thursday -- including homers from Miguel Montero, Jason Kubel and Gerardo Parra -- after combining for one run and 10 hits while losing its first two games in Texas.
Kubel is batting .333 with three home runs and 14 RBIs in his last seven games, and is 3 for 10 with a home run and double against Haren since 2010.
The Diamondbacks counter with Trevor Cahill (4-5, 3.36), who is seeking a third straight victory.
After tossing a six-hitter in a 6-0 win over San Diego on June 3, Cahill permitted two runs in 7 13 innings of Saturday's 8-3 victory over Oakland, his former team. The right-hander has yielded two runs or fewer in three of his last four starts.
Cahill lost to the Angels twice last season after going 3-1 with a 1.29 ERA against them in 2010.
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
ANAHEIM, Calif. The pitcher and the manager agreed on two salient points Friday night.
The pitcher felt good, and the pitcher made one critical mistake.
Sometimes that's all it takes. Dan Haren knows that as well as anyone.
The Angels right-hander threw a pretty good game against the Arizona Diamondbacks in the opener of a three-game series at Angel Stadium. The one pitch...
POPS HAD CIRCUMSTANCES
Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson was busy and missed his son's graduation. He gave a very interesting explanation for why.
According to his teammate Brad Ziegler, J.J. Putz was thrilled to pull a rare autographed card of the Biebs from a recently opened pack of baseball cards.
LOS ANGELES Wednesday was beginning to look like just another miserable night at the plate for Erick Aybar -- and there have been too many of them this season.
Pop fly, double play grounder, fly ball out. Aybar's batting average had fallen to .218 by the time he came to bat in the ninth inning at Dodger Stadium. There was no reason to think this would be any different.
Los Angeles Angels general manager Jerry Dipoto readily admits they were probably his top two concerns "leaving the dock out of spring training." The Angels had no consistent leadoff presence and their bullpen was too thin to back an outstanding starting rotation. Now, however, those two areas have essentially been dealt with -- with the promotion of rookie outfielder...
He wouldn't, would he?
Oh wait, it's Gibson? Never mind. Kirk Gibson totally would.
The undertaker of understatement, the man who brought us the instantly quotable line "I'm not out here to win a beauty contest" is at it again.
Gibson guided the Arizona Diamondbacks to an 11-3 victory over Texas on Thursday -- in lieu of attending son Cameron's graduation...
When my grandfather passed away last spring, the family had to clear out and sell the wonderful little house in northern Virginia that he had lived in (with my grandmother, until 2008) since sometime in the sixties. Among the few things that I ended up with, being the baseball guy, was my pick of whatever I thought was salvageable of a large, worn stack of sports magazines that had...
Willie Bloomquist calls hitting "a battle every day."
These days, he is winning.
Bloomquist has hit safely in 17 of his last 19 games after doubling in the ninth inning of Texas' 9-1 victory Tuesday that stopped the Diamondbacks' winning streak at five games. More impressive than the consistency is the volume. Bloomquist has 12 multi-hit games over the same stretch...
Kirk Gibson likes to keep things real to people. He went as far as to ban phones and toys in the Arizona Diamondbacks clubhouse last year. Now the team manager went as far to not even attend his son’s high school graduation.
He told AP:
“You’re supposed to graduate,” Gibson said. ”His mom and the rest of the family will be there. He’s coming to see me next week.”...
Trevor Cahill pitched three-hit ball into the eighth inning, Aaron Hill hit a three-run homer, and the Arizona Diamondbacks slowed the Los Angeles Angels' roll through June with a 5-0 victory Friday night.
Jason Kubel had three hits and drove in an early run for the Diamondbacks, who earned their ninth win in 12 games and got back to .500 (32-32) for just the second time since...
Arizona's Joe Saunders hopes his first start against his former team goes a bit better than Los Angeles Angels right-hander Dan Haren's did in the series opener.
Saunders looks to help the surging Diamondbacks move over .500 for the first time in six weeks Saturday night in his return to Angel Stadium.
In their first trip to Anaheim since 2001, the Diamondbacks (32-32)...
The Diamondbacks broke out of a mini-offensive slump with another three-homer game Thursday, avoiding a three-game sweep in Texas in the process.
After scoring only one run in the first two games of the series, the D-backs blew open an 11-3 victory with a five-run sixth inning, which was capped by Gerardo Parra's three-run homer.
Parra has been a major contributor in the D...
Cam Bedrosian, RHP, Los Angeles Angels
Current Level: A
2012 Top 15 Prospects Ranking: 14th
Current Value: Underrated
The 29th overall selection in the 2010 draft, Bedrosian was one of my favorite prep arms available that year. He made just five appearances, though, before hurting his elbow and undergoing Tommy John surgery. Just 17 when he was draft, the right-hander is still just...
ANAHEIM, Calif. -- What started with a fun tweet -- a picture of Diamondbacks closer J.J. Putz holding a Justin Bieber baseball card -- has blown up.
"The only thing missing Bieber himself," D-backs reliever David Hernandez said Friday afternoon.
That may change, too.
The D-backs players have floated the idea of inviting pop icon Bieber and his opening act, Carly Rae...
Jason Kubel and Gerardo Parra homered to back Daniel Hudson's seven solid innings in Arizona's 11-3 victory over the AL West-leading Texas Rangers on Thursday night.
The Diamondbacks scored one run while losing the first two games of the series, but led for good in the finale after Kubel's two-run homer in the second off Scott Feldman (0-6).
Parra's three-run shot...