MLB

Mon, Jun 3, 2013 - 10:05 PM ET
 

Astros-Angels Preview

Share This Story

   
 

In order to avoid the embarrassment of a four-game home sweep at the hands of the Houston Astros, the Los Angeles Angels are turning to a pitcher tied for the most losses in the AL.

Joe Blanton has already lost once this season to the Astros, who bring a season-high five-game win streak into Monday night's series finale.

Houston (20-37) is the worst team in the league, and the addition of the club with the lowest payroll in baseball to the AL would seemingly serve to benefit a Los Angeles team expected to contend in the West.

Instead the Angels (25-32) are now 3-6 against their newest division rivals after hitting .218 and scoring seven runs in losing the first three games of this series.

"I don't think they're playing over their heads against us," said the Angels' C.J. Wilson, who suffered Sunday's 5-4 loss. "They're a major league team,''

Houston, meanwhile, is seeking its first six-game run since winning seven straight July 27-Aug. 3, 2010.

"If we can compete with the Angels, then we can compete with anybody,'' Astros reliever Hector Ambriz said. "We've attacked their whole lineup with fastballs, curveballs and off-speed pitches and haven't fallen behind in the count. You've got to respect what they can do, but we've got to respect our stuff, too.''

Los Angeles will give the ball to Blanton (1-8, 5.94 ERA), who is tied with Houston's Philip Humber for the league's most defeats. Humber was sent to the minors May 14.

Blanton has turned in two straight decent efforts, yielding two runs over 6 1-3 innings in a 5-4 victory May 23 at Kansas City and allowing three runs over seven in Tuesday's 3-0 loss to the Dodgers.

Another one of his better outings came May 8 against the Astros, as the right-hander gave up three runs over 6 2-3 innings in a 3-1 defeat.

Carlos Pena is 5 for 13 against Blanton. The Houston slugger has hit safely in five straight games, going 6 for 12 in this series with a solo homer Sunday.

J.D. Martinez is also red hot with 11 hits in his last 26 at-bats. Chris Carter is 10 for 29 in the season series with four homers and 10 of his 31 RBIs.

Some of the high-priced Angels' big names have come up small, in contrast, this weekend. Josh Hamilton is 2 for 12 in this series and Albert Pujols 2 for 7 after not starting Friday due to foot and knee problems.

Hamilton is 5 for 17 against Astros starter Erik Bedard (0-2, 5.32) while Pujols has never faced the left-hander.

Bedard is 0-4 with a 6.97 ERA over his last 11 starts dating to 2012. However, he has posted a 3.27 ERA and no decisions over his last four outings since returning to the rotation after a brief stint in the bullpen.

His 7.08 ERA at Angel Stadium is his worst mark at any park where he has started more than once.

Astros shortstop Marwin Gonzalez could return Monday after missing the last four games with a right hamstring strain.

Tagged: Angels, Astros, Joe Blanton

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by



MLB Videos

Bautista talks Derek Jeter's final All-Star Game Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Jose Bautista discusses Derek Jeter's career and his final appearance in the MLB...

Jeter honored to play in last All-Star Game Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Derek Jeter compares his first All-Star Game experience with his last, Mike Trou...

Matheny defends Wainwright: He's out there to compete Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Mike Matheny comments on the media's reaction to Adam Wainwright's joke about le...

SimLeague Baseball - Simulation Baseball Game

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Nike New York Yankees Practice T-Shirt - Ash http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Yankees/browse/featuredproduct/606363/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_606000/ff_606363_xl.jpg&w=100 27.95 Nike New York Yankees Practice T-Shirt - Ash
    Majestic Detroit Tigers 2012 MLB American League Champions Clubhouse Locker Room T-Shirt - Navy Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Detroit_Tigers/browse/featuredproduct/1064043/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1064000/ff_1064043_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Majestic Detroit Tigers 2012 MLB American League Champions Clubhouse Locker Room..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room T-Shirt - Gray http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067359/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067359_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker R..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room Pullover Hoodie - Steel http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067382/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067382_xl.jpg&w=100 54.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker R..
    New Era San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Room 39THIRTY Flex Hat - Charcoal/Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1067785/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1067000/ff_1067785_xl.jpg&w=100 31.95 New Era San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Clubhouse Locker Ro..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Glory T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1068294/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1068000/ff_1068294_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Glory T-Shirt - Bl..
    Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Batting Practice Performance Jersey - Black/Orange http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Francisco_Giants/browse/featuredproduct/1068787/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1068000/ff_1068787_xl.jpg&w=100 94.95 Majestic San Francisco Giants 2012 MLB World Series Champions Batting Practice P..