After the Los Angeles Angels were the victims of late-inning
heroics Monday, they appeared to be set for a similar ending
Instead, they’ll have a chance to win this three-game series –
though the pitching matchup hardly seems to be in their favor.
Yu Darvish looks to continue his impressive start for visiting
Texas on Wednesday night while the Angels turn to fill-in rookie
starter Michael Roth in what looks to be a tough spot.
A day after Ernesto Frieri surrendered the go-ahead homer in the
top of the ninth to A.J. Pierzynski in a 7-6 Rangers win, Texas
(13-7) tied the score at 4-all Tuesday with an unearned run in the
eighth. Frieri almost suffered a similar fate as Mike Trout – with
a Texas runner on third in the ninth – took what would have been
extra bases away from Adrian Beltre as he laid out for a diving
catch on the warning track.
Howie Kendrick delivered the deciding blow with his second home
run of the night in the bottom of the 11th to give the Angels a 5-4
“It’s a great feeling to know that you can leave the other team
on the field,” Kendrick said two days after Mark Trumbo hit a
walk-off homer to beat Detroit in 13 innings. “But to get the
victory is the most important thing.”
Kendrick and the rest of the order now will have to contend with
Darvish (3-1, 2.03 ERA), who has struck out 38 in 26 2-3 innings
over his four starts. He surrendered season highs of six hits and
four walks – resulting in three runs – over five innings against
the Angels (8-11) on April 7 in a 7-3 win.
Darvish is coming off his 10th career 10-strikeout game as he
threw seven shutout innings against the Mariners on Friday.
While he still could stand to be more efficient – Darvish needed
111 pitches against Seattle – manager Ron Washington won’t complain
if the wins continue to pile up.
“He’s been asserting himself for quite a while now – even when
he felt that maybe he wasn’t performing the way he should, the
results were still being gotten,” Washington told the team’s
official website. “That’s what good pitchers do.”
The Angels counter with Roth (1-0, 3.60), who will make his
first career start. The left-hander is filling in for Tommy Hanson,
who was placed on the bereavement list Monday following a death in
Roth is just two days removed from being charged with a run
without recording an out in Monday’s series opener. The 23-year-old
gave up a single to Lance Berkman, the only batter he faced in his
fourth relief appearance this season.
“My arm feels good,” Roth told the Angels’ official website. “I
haven’t thrown out of the ‘pen on back-to-back days yet. I think
I’ll be all right.”
Darvish was just fine in Anaheim last season, going 2-1 with a
2.11 ERA and fanning 27 in 21 1-3 innings.
Mike Trout is one of the few Angels to have had some success
against Darvish, going 6 for 19 with two homers and five walks.
Kendrick is 0 for 12 with five strikeouts.