After a horrible start, Los Angeles has won seven of its past 10. Now the Angels head to Arlington for their first game of the season against the two-time defending American League champions from Texas. Many people expected the Angels and Rangers to slug it out for the AL West title, but Texas Rangers has built a seven-game advantage on its division rival through the season’s first six weeks. Los Angeles Angels started the season 7-15 before playing better of late, winning four of its past five.
The Rangers lead the majors in runs scored (182), sparked by Josh Hamilton’s sensational start to the season. Hamilton leads all of baseball in average (.395), homers (15) and RBIs (38). The Angels spent big money in the offseason to challenge Texas, but newly acquired first baseman Albert Pujols is hitting a paltry .198 with one home run.
Angels Rangers Betting
When: 8:05 PM ET, Friday, May 11, 2012
Where: Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Arlington, Texas
TV: 8:05 p.m. ET, MLB Network (nationwide), Fox Sports West (Los Angeles), TXA-21 (Arlington)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Los Angeles LH C.J. Wilson (4-2, 2.61 ERA) vs. Texas RH Yu Darvish (4-1, 2.54 ERA).
After striking out 15 hitters in his first three starts for the Angels, Wilson has whiffed 24 hitters in his past three outings. The left-hander won his second straight decision Saturday, striking out nine and allowing six hits in eight innings against Toronto.
Darvish suffered his first loss Sunday at Cleveland, giving up six hits and three earned runs in six innings. Darvish did strike out a season-high 11, the second game in his past three in which the Japanese sensation has whiffed 10 or more hitters.
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1. Texas won 12 of the 19 matchups with Los Angeles last season.
2. Los Angeles catcher Chris Iannetta will undergo surgery on his right wrist. The Angels expect Iannetta to miss six to eight weeks.
3. Hamilton, who became the 16th player in baseball history to hit four homers in a game on Tuesday, is 8-for-17 with six homers and 12 RBIs in his past four games.