Series: Game 2 of 4

LA Angels leads 2-0 (as of 8/1)

Game 1: Thursday, July 31
LA Angels12Final
NY Yankees6
Game 2: Friday, August 1
LA Angels1Final
NY Yankees0
Game 3: Saturday, August 2
LA Angels2Final
NY Yankees8
Game 4: Sunday, August 3
LA Angels9Final
NY Yankees14

Angels 1

(69-40, 38-19 away)

Yankees 0

(59-50, 34-26 home)

    7:05 PM ET, August 1, 2008

    Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York 

    123456789 R H E
    LAA 000000001 1 4 0
    NYY 000000000 0 5 0

    W: E. Santana (12-5)

    L: M. Rivera (4-4)

    S: F. Rodriguez (45)

    Angels-Yankees Preview


    With the best record in baseball and a recently bolstered lineup, the Los Angeles Angels appear to be on cruise control toward their fourth AL West title in the last five years and another appearance in the playoffs.

    They may also have some say as to whether the New York Yankees will join them.

    The Yankees, who have nine of their 54 remaining games against the Angels, will look to bounce back from a blowout loss to Los Angeles when the clubs continue their four-game series in the Bronx on Friday.

    The red-hot Angels (68-40) finished a dominating July with Thursday's 12-6 victory over the Yankees. Their 19-6 record last month was the best in baseball.

    They have won 13 of their last 15 games overall, starting their current road trip with six wins in seven games to move 12 1/2 games ahead of second-place Texas in the West.

    Thursday's win came after they swept three games from the Red Sox in Boston this week, improving their league-best road record to 37-19. After getting three-run home runs from Vladimir Guerrero, Juan Rivera and Torii Hunter on Thursday, they've scored at least 10 runs four times since the All-Star break after accomplishing the feat four times all season before the break.

    "You got athletes on this team," said Hunter, who has five home runs and 14 RBIs on the road trip. "We're hyenas. We take advantage of the weak link. You make a mistake and we're gone."

    Mark Teixeira -- the slugger the Angels acquired in a trade from Atlanta on Tuesday -- got his first two hits with his new team Thursday, but their offense hasn't needed him lately. Los Angeles averaged 6.4 runs in July after scoring 3.8 per game in June.

    "If you looked at some of the numbers guys were sitting on as we got into the middle of June, I think it was very apparent that even their average year would mean a big upswing in the second half of the year," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.

    The Yankees (59-49) may have to win a few games against Los Angeles if they hope to qualify for their 14th straight postseason. After three more games this weekend, they play six games in Anaheim between Aug. 8 and Sept. 10.

    New York has stumbled lately, losing four of five since winning its first eight games after the All-Star break. Yankees pitchers have allowed 44 runs in their last five games.

    The skid started with Sidney Ponson on the mound, as he allowed seven runs in four innings of Sunday's 9-2 loss at Boston. Ponson (6-2, 4.59 ERA) has now allowed 109 hits in 82 1-3 innings this year, as batters have a .322 average against him.

    "I don't know what to say," Ponson said. "I pitched like crap."

    Ponson won his first seven career decisions against the Angels before losing the last two. He hasn't made a start against them since Aug. 2, 2005, when he allowed eight runs -- including a pair of two-run home runs by Guerrero -- in 5 1-3 innings while pitching for Baltimore.

    For Los Angeles, Ervin Santana will be trying to avoid losing a third straight start for the first time this season. Santana gave up five runs in five-plus innings at Baltimore on Sunday in the Angels' 5-2 loss.

    Santana (11-5, 3.57) is still 8-2 with a 3.77 ERA on the road this season after entering the year 10-21 with a 7.28 ERA in 39 career road starts.

    In his last visit to Yankee Stadium on July 8, 2007, Santana gave up nine runs in three-plus innings in an 8-3 defeat, losing to New York for the first time in five career starts.

    The Angels are still 14-9 in the Bronx since the beginning of the 2004 season. They're the only AL opponent with a winning record there over that span.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Gameday Matchup

     Los AngelesNew York
    Current StreakW1L1
    Last 107-38-2

    Pitching Matchup

    Los AngelesNew York
    E. Santana
    16-7, 3.49 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/27 at LAA
    5.2 IP, 8 ER
    Dec = Loss
    S. Ponson
    8-5, 5.04 ERA

    Last Game:
    9/28 at BOS
    6.0 IP, 1 ER
    Dec = ND

    Gameday Lineups

    NO.Los AngelesNew York
    1. C. Figgins, 3B J. Damon, LF
    2. M. Izturis, SS D. Jeter, SS
    3. M. Teixeira, 1B B. Abreu, RF
    4. V. Guerrero, RF A. Rodriguez, 3B
    5. T. Hunter, CF J. Giambi, DH
    6. G. Anderson, DH R. Cano, 2B
    7. H. Kendrick, 2B W. Betemit, 1B
    8. J. Rivera, LF I. Rodriguez, C
    9. J. Mathis, C M. Cabrera, CF