Preview: Blake Snell looks to clean some things up as Rays continue series against Angels

TV: FOX Sports Sun

TIME: Pregame coverage begins at 9:30 p.m.


The Tampa Bay Rays have won four in a row heading into the second contest of their four-game series against the Los Angeles Angels on Friday night at Angel Stadium.

The Angels (25-19) lost the series opener 7-1 on Thursday night.

“We’re not firing on a lot of cylinders, and we’re putting a lot of pressure on the pitchers,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said.

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Tampa Bay left-hander Blake Snell (4-3, 3.12 ERA) is scheduled to make the start for the Rays on Friday.

He made six consecutive quality starts in April and May, pitching at least six innings and giving up two runs or fewer, but took a step back Sunday at the Baltimore Orioles.

He gave up three solo home runs in the second inning, which was as many as he had allowed in his previous six starts combined, and the Orioles continued to pour it on in the 17-1 victory. Snell gave up five runs in 3 1/3 innings.

“I’ve got to clean it up,” Snell told reporters after the loss. “I’m throwing in L.A. Friday, so I’ve got to get it going now and figure it all out and be ready to face that lineup, because they’re good too.”

Snell, a supplemental first-round pick of the Rays in 2011, made his only appearance against the Angels as the starter on July 7, 2016. He gave up two runs and four hits in six innings of the 5-1 loss in Tampa Bay.

Los Angeles Angels center fielder Mike Trout will try to pull out of the worst hitless streak of his career Friday night.

Trout, a two-time AL MVP, is hitless in his past 19 at bats.

To make matters worse, Angels left fielder Justin Upton left in the sixth inning after getting hit in the left arm by a pitch, but X-rays did not reveal any fractures, according to Fox Sports West.

The Rays lost shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria in the second inning with a leg injury, which occurred while running to first on a single to left.

Nick Tropeano will make his sixth start of the season for the Angels after going winless in his past four.

Tropeano (1-2, 3.64) has been solid this month, however. He threw 6 1/3 shutout innings on May 1 against the Baltimore Orioles, but missed out on a win when the bullpen squandered a 2-0 lead in the ninth before Los Angeles won in extra innings.

He gave up three runs and five hits in six innings against the Minnesota Twins on Saturday, but the Angels lost 5-3 in 12 innings.

Tropeano has made two career appearances against the Rays, both during the 2016 season. He allowed three runs and seven hits with 10 strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings of a 3-1 loss in Tampa Bay on May 8, and two runs and four hits in five innings of a 4-2 loss July 4.

Rays first baseman Brad Miller homered off Tropeano in both games.