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Series #21: Athletics at Angels - Escaping a Rut

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MLB: Los Angeles Angels at Chicago Cubs Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

Losing to your rival is always rough.

It has been an up and down season for the A’s thus far, the highest of highs frequently followed by the lowest of lows. As such, the A’s currently find themselves in third place, the team in mid-freefall after getting swept by the Astros and losing two of three to the Angels the series before. Fortunately for the A’s, the team needn’t even think about the Astros until after the All Star Break in July, giving the team plenty of time to recover and bounce back from whatever that latest series was, but the team does get to think about the Angels, who are currently a half game behind the A’s in the standings and due to play the team over the next three days.

The A’s have four wins and three losses against the Angels this year, with half of the games being decided by two runs or fewer. The two teams have appeared to be more or less evenly matched this season, and the win-loss head-to-head totals paired with the season win-loss totals indicate as much.

The Angels enter this series with an offense that has been on fire for the last week. Of course, Mike Trout has been paving the way, hitting with a cool 1.498 OPS over the last week. Trout is also leading the team in home runs and stolen bases during this time. Cesar Puello and Luis Rengifo, both getting an opportunity to show the big league club what they’ve got, have also been on fire recently, making the most of their chances in the show. Out of all the regulars in the Angels’ lineup, only Jonathan Lucroy and Tommy La Stella have an OPS below .800 during the last week.

The pitching has been a bit hit or miss for the Angels, as several guys are getting the job done but haven’t been able to make it deep into ballgames. Griffin Canning, a rookie and recent callup from Mission Viejo, CA has been the most impressive pitcher of the bunch. Over the course of six starts, Canning has thirty four strikeouts in thirty two innings, and possesses a WHIP of 0.96.

This series is a vital one for the A’s to bounce back and get into the swing of things once again. The A’s are precariously low in the standings right now, and whatever extra distance the A’s can create between themselves and everyone else is the key to a successful season.

Potential Lineups

Tommy La Stella - 3B

Mike Trout - CF

Shohei Ohtani - DH

Jonathan Lucroy - C

Kole Calhoun - RF

David Fletcher - SS

Brian Goodwin - LF

Jared Walsh - 1B

Luis Rengifo - 2B

Pitching Matchups

Frankie Montas vs Griffin Canning

Daniel Mengden vs Felix Pena

Mike Fiers vs Tyler Skaggs

Game Information

Game #61: Tuesday, June 4th at 7:07

Game #62: Wednesday, June 5th at 7:07

Game #63: Thursday, June 6th at 7:07

All games are on NBCSCA and FSW.