W2W4: Rangers vs. Angels

September, 6, 2013
9/06/13
10:33
AM CT
Texas Rangers (80-59, 1st place/AL West) vs. Los Angeles Angels (65-74, 3rd place/AL West)

Friday: RHP Matt Garza (3-2, 4.04 ERA) vs. LHP C.J. Wilson (14-6, 3.35), 9:05 p.m. CT

Saturday: LHP Derek Holland (9-7, 3.07) vs. RHP Garrett Richards (5-6, 4.06), 8:05 p.m.

Sunday: TBA vs. LHP Jason Vargas (8-6, 3.80), 2:35 p.m.

Here's what to watch for in this weekend's series between the Rangers and Angels:

Halos playing spoiler: It used to be that the American League West went through Anaheim, as the Angels dominated the division most of the past decade. Well, as awful as the Angels have been this season, they will have a say in the West race, just not the one they'd like to have. The Halos play seven games against the Rangers and six against the A's down the stretch. Texas has dominated the Angels, going 10-2 against its rival. The A's are 9-4 against the Halos.

Playing better: The Angels have picked up their play of late, winning 10 of their past 13 games. They are pitching well. The Halos have the best ERA in the big leagues since Aug. 22, posting a 2.53 mark. The Angels have had 12 quality starts in their past 15 games.

PODCAST
Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss what the Rangers need to do to grind out the AL West, what he sees when he looks at Yu Darvish right now and a lot more.

Listen Listen
Hamilton is back: With former Ranger Josh Hamilton, it's always something. Lately it's been sinus problems. He's had trouble throwing from the outfield. Undoubtedly, there are other issues, as his first season with the Angels has been a disaster. But he is playing well of late, batting .344 in his past 24 games. He's walked 11 times in 15 games. And he has hit Rangers pitching. He's batting .292 with a home run and seven RBIs this season against Texas.

Trout rolls on: Mike Trout always strikes fear in opponents. Trout is batting .370 since the All-Star break, the best in baseball. He is the youngest player in major league history to post two seasons of 20 home runs and 30 stolen bases. This is the fourth season by an Angel with 20-plus homers and 30-plus steals. Bobby Bonds did it in 1977 and Devon White in 1987.

Angels' pen: The last time the Rangers saw the Angels, they had three walk-off wins as they completely demoralized the Halos' bullpen. It's still a disaster area. Angel relievers are 18-22 with a 4.26 ERA, ranking them 13th in the American League. They have 15 blown saves.

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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Yu Darvish
WINS ERA SO IP
10 3.06 182 144
OTHER LEADERS
BAA. Beltre .325
HRA. Beltre 17
RBIA. Beltre 67
RA. Beltre 66
OPSA. Beltre .876
ERAY. Darvish 3.06
SOY. Darvish 182