Wednesday, May 29, 2024
World Elite Syndicate

MLB Preview: Los Angeles Angels (22-21) at Baltimore Orioles (27-15)


LEADING OFF: Today, the Angels play the sixth (2-3) of seven games on a road trip to Cleveland (1-2) and Baltimore (1-1; May 15-18)…Halos went 2-4 on last homestand against the Rangers (1-2) and Astros (1- 2)…LAA was 4-2 on last road trip at Milwaukee (1-2) and St. Louis (3-0).

FACING A FORMER PICK: Today’s starting pitcher for Baltimore, Kyle Bradish was the Angels fourth round selection in the 2018 Draft out of New Mexico State University…He was traded to the Orioles on Dec. 4, 2019 as part of the deal which brought Dylan Bundy to the Halos.

THE LEAD OFF MAN: Mickey Moniak has hit leadoff home runs in two of his three games played for the Angels this season…He’s one of seven players in the Majors with multiple leadoff HR this year…He celebrated his 25th birthday on Saturday and became the first player in MLB history to make his season debut on his birthday and hit a leadoff home run… Additionally, he was the first player in Angels history to hit a leadoff homer on his birthday.

.500 BASEBALL: With a 22-21 record, Halos are looking to avoid falling back to .500 mark for a 10th time this season (1-1, 5-5, 7-7, 8-8, 9-9, 10-10, 11-11, 12-12 & 14-14).

A LOOK AT THE STANDINGS: Angels enter play today in third place in the American League West standings (-4.5 games behind Texas; matches largest deficit of season).

ANOTHER DAY, ANOTHER SHO: Monday night, Shohei Ohtani became the first pitcher to reach base safely five times in a game since Mel Stottlemyre for the Yankees on Sept. 26, 1964 at Washington…He finished a double shy of becoming the first starting pitcher in MLB history to hit for the cycle. MORE HISTORY: Shohei Ohtani reached the 400 career innings pitched threshold on Monday night… According to ELIAS, his 509 strikeouts in his first 400 innings as a starter are the second-most all-time (Corbin Burnes had 539 strikeouts through his first 400 IP for Milwaukee).

VS. BALTIMORE: Today is the third (1-1) of seven matchups this season between the Angels and Orioles…In addition to the current series in Baltimore, the teams will meet again Sept. 4-6 at Angel Stadium… Last season, Halos went 1-6 against Orioles…LAA has lost nine of last 11 games vs. O’s.

STREAK SNAPPED: Angels victory Monday night snapped a six game losing streak at Camden Yards, which dated back to Aug. 24, 2021 (streak finished tied for Angels longest at the ballpark; also had six game losing streak at Camden Yards in 2003).

LEAGUE LEADER: Shohei Ohtani, leads the Majors in opponent batting average (.145), and ranks third in strikeouts (71) and sixth in WHIP (0.91). PLAY FROM AHEAD: Halos have held leads in 36 of 43 games played this year.

GOING DEEP: Angels have hit 56 home runs this season, which are fourth-most in the A.L, behind the Rays (84), Yankees (65) and Twins (58).

SINGLE HANDED: Gio Urshela has hit 37 singles this year plus six extra-base hits (five doubles & one home run)…Urshela ranks second, behind Toronto’s Bo Bichette (39), for the American League lead in singles.

ESTÉVEZ ENDING: This season, Carlos Estévez is pitching to a 1.42 ERA (19 IP – 3 ER) and has converted all nine of his save opportunities…Is looking to become first Angels pitcher to convert his first 10 save opportunities of a season since Ernesto Frieri converted his first 12 opportunities in 2012.

WALSH ON REHAB: Jared Walsh (headaches and insomnia) has played four games on his rehab assignment with Triple-A Salt Lake and is batting .462 (6/13) with three runs scored, one home run, three RBI and three walks.

THE INJURED LIST: Halos currently have 11 players on the injured list and have used the IL 14 total times this year.

ALL OVER THE INFIELD: Gio Urshela is one of six players in the Majors to appear at all four infield positions this season…He has made 16 starts at first base, 12 starts at third base, eight at shortstop and one at second base.

LATE COMEBACKS: Halos have three wins this season when trailing after eight innings, which matches the Angels total from each of the last two seasons…Last time LAA had more than three wins in a season when trailing after eight frames was 2017 (5).

UNEARNED: Angels have allowed 26 unearned runs this season, which is the most in the Majors…Halos have committed 30 fielding errors this season, which is tied with Oakland for the most in the Majors.

ON THE BOARD: Halos have not been shut out since Aug. 21, 2022 at Detroit…Current streak of 84 games without being shut out is the longest active streak in the Majors and fifth-longest streak in Angels history.

NET-OW: Zack Neto has been hit by seven pitches this season, which is tied for third-most in the Majors… Since 1901, Neto’s seven HBP through his first 15 career games are the most in MLB…He also was the first player in Angels history to be hit a pitch in four consecutive games (April 18-21).

TWINS ON DECK: Following the current series in Baltimore, the Angels will return home and begin a nine game homestand with a three game set against the Minnesota Twins…Last season, Halos went 4-2 against Minnesota to take the season series for a second consecutive year.

2-1, 6.38 ERA
Holding right-handers to a .235 (12/51) average this season

  • TODAY’S GAME: Making sixth start of the season and third on the road…Is in fourth Major League season with Angels.
  • HE’S BACK: Made season debut on April 12 vs. Washington; first Major league appearance July 2, 2021… Missed Angels first 11 games of the season on injured list with a left groin strain…Spent entire 2022 season and final two months of 2021 season on IL with a low back stress reaction.
  • UNDER SEVEN HITS: Has allowed seven-or-fewer hits in all 46 career pitching starts…Streak of 46 straight starts with seven-or-fewer hits allowed is second-longest in Angels history (Rickey Clark had a 50 game streak between the 1967-1971 seasons).
  • CURRENT TRENDS: Allowed three-or-fewer runs in each of first three starts this season, but has yielded five runs in each of last two starts.
  • LAST TIME OUT: Took the loss in last start on May 10 vs. Houston after tossing 3.2 innings and allowing five earned runs on five hits with one walk and three strikeouts…Marked shortest start of season and matched season high in runs allowed…First losing decision since June 3, 2021.
  • STREAK SNAPPED: Had career-best streak of three consecutive winning decisions snapped in last start last Wednesday vs. Houston…The streak dating back to June 9, 2021 and included wins in consecutive starts this season on April 25 and May 4.
  • VS. BALTIMORE: In three career games (two starts) vs. Orioles, is 0-2 with a 14.46 ERA (9.1 IP – 15 ER)…Took first career Major League loss in start on May 12, 2019 at Camden Yards (4.2 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 4 BB, 6 SO)…Also was tagged with loss in first career relief appearance on July 25, 2019 after entering in 15th inning (2 IP, 5 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 2 SO)…Last outing vs. Baltimore was July 2, 2021 in final outing before injured list placement.
  • AT CAMDEN YARDS: Today marks second career appearance in Baltimore…Is 0-1 with a 7.71 ERA (4.2 IP – 4 ER) following only previous outing on May 12, 2019 in third start of Major League career (first loss).
  • THAT’S RIGHT: Through five starts this year, has held righties to a .235 average (12/51) compared with a .293 (12/41) opponent average against left-handers.
  • GETTING AHEAD: Recorded a first pitch strike on 62.5% (65/104) of his batter faced this season.
  • UNFAMILIAR FOES: In his career as a starter, has held opponents to a .207 average (74/358) in opposing
    batter’s first plate appearances of a game.


BACK IN THE WIN COLUMN: The Orioles defeated the Angels last night, 7-3, in the second game of the four-game set at Oriole Park…Snapped a two-game skid.

Ryan O’Hearn and Ryan Mountcastle each homered from the nine spot, the fifth time in O’s history (since 1954) that the Birds have had two different players homer out of the final spot in the lineup and first since April 18, 1992, when Chris Hoiles and Jeff Tackett did so against the Tigers at Oriole Park.

Dean Kremer has won three straight starts for the first time in his career; the O’s are 6-3 in Kremer’s starts this season.

O’s pitchers did not walk a batter last night, their third game of the year with zero free passes allowed, along with April 18 at Washington and May 3 at Kansas City.

WHAT’S TRENDING: The O’s have won 18 of their last 26 games, 21 of 30, and 23 of 33… The 27-15 overall record ranks second in MLB to start the season.

Last season, the Birds did not reach 27 wins until the 63rd game on June 14 (27- 36); they did not reach 28 wins until the 65th game on June 16 (28-37).

The Orioles are 89-64 since June 1, 2022, a 94-win pace; the .582 winning percentage during that time is the second-best in the AL and fourth- best in MLB, trailing the Braves (.675, 104-50), Dodgers (.673, 105-51), and Astros (.630, 97-57).

AGAINST THE ANGELS: The O’s and Angels continue a seven-game season series tonight with the third of four games at Oriole Park through tomorrow…The Orioles will travel to Angel Stadium for three games from September 4-6…The Birds went 6-1 against the Angels in 2022, including sweeping a four-game series from July 7-10 at Camden Yards for the first time against the Angels since 2003.

FEELS GOOD TO BE HOME: The Orioles are nearing the end of an 11-day, 10-game homestand, their longest of the season, which concludes tomorrow with the finale of a four-game set against Los Angeles-AL…The O’s have gone 5-3, winning four straight games from May 9-13.

LOOKING AHEAD: The O’s hit the road for a seven-day, six-game road trip beginning on Friday in Toronto, the first meeting between the O’s and Blue Jays this season… After an off day next Monday, the Orioles make their first trip to Yankee Stadium this year with three games against the Yankees from May 23-25.

WHAT A RELIEF: The Baltimore bullpen owns a 2.94 ERA (52 ER/159.1 IP), second-best in MLB behind Seattle (2.83)…Baltimore’s 2.29 reliever ERA (20 ER/78.2 IP) at home ranks as the second-best in the majors behind Toronto (2.24)…O’s relievers have 12 wins this season, tied with Arizona and New York-AL for second in MLB, trailing Cincinnati and Miami (13)…The O’s are second in MLB with 188 strikeouts from the ‘pen, trailing Kansas City (198).

LET BRYAN BAKE: After allowing a career-high-tying three earned runs on Opening Day in Boston, Bryan Baker has allowed just one earned run over his last 20 appearances (19.2 IP)…Among pitchers with at least 18.0 innings pitched since March 31, Baker’s 0.46 ERA (1 ER/19.2 IP) ranks second in MLB, behind only teammate Yennier Cano (0.00) and ahead of fellow O’s hurler Félix Bautista, whose 1.00 ERA (2 ER/18.0 IP) in that span ranks tied for fifth.

Baker’s 21 appearances lead the team and are tied for third in MLB.

According to Statcast, Baker ranks in the top six percent of MLB in xBA (.174) and xSLG (.270), the top 11 percent in strikeout rate (32.1%), and the top 12 percent in Hard-Hit Percentage (30.2%).

His changeup has a 69.2 percent strikeout rate and a .058 xBA, the highest strikeout rate and lowest xBA on a pitch by an Oriole in 2023; it also has a 46.2 percent Whiff Rate, the second-highest on a pitch by an O’s hurler behind Bautista’s splitter (58.3%).

THE CANO SHOW: Yennier Cano has surrendered just four hits and one hit batter in 20.2 scoreless innings over 16 appearances to begin the season after being recalled from Triple-A Norfolk on April 14…He allowed his first extra-base hit of the year on a one-out double from Pittsburgh’s Tucupita Marcano on Saturday…Opponents are slashing .063/.078/.079 (4-for-63) against him, all of which lead MLB pitchers with at least 15 appearances…His .157 OPS against is less than half of the next closest player (SD’s Josh Hader, .361).

He leads all O’s and ranks tied for seventh among all MLB pitchers with 1.9 bWAR, per Baseball Reference.

Cano’s 16-game scoreless streak is the third-longest to begin a year by an O’s pitcher in team history (since 1954), trailing Donnie Hart (18 G) in 2016 and Will Ohman (25 G) in 2010.

CED AND DONE: Cedric Mullins became the seventh player in Orioles history (since 1954) to hit for the cycle on Friday night…Mullins capped off his historic night with a three-run homer in the eighth inning after singling in the third, tripling in the fifth, and doubling in the seventh.

Mullins joined Austin Hays (6/22/22 vs. WSH), Jonathan Villar (8/5/19 vs. NYY), Félix Pié (8/14/09 vs. LAA), Aubrey Huff (6/29/07 vs. LAA), Cal Ripken, Jr. (5/6/84 at TEX), and Brooks Robinson (7/15/60 at CWS) as Orioles to hit for the cycle; he is the second MLB player to hit for the cycle this season, along with Miami’s Luis Arraez (4/11 at PHI).

Has hit safely in nine of his last 11 starts and 15 of his last 19.

His 33 RBI rank sixth in the AL and tied for seventh in MLB; the 32 RBI as the center fielder lead the majors.

He leads the O’s with 1.5 fWAR, per FanGraphs.

BIG TIME RUTSCH: Adley Rutschman has appeared in all 42 Orioles games this season, the most by a player who has played at least half of his games at catcher…His 75 times on base lead the AL and are tied for fifth in MLB…He leads the AL and is tied for third in MLB with 32 walks while ranking fourth in the AL and 10th in the majors with a .405 on-base percentage.

1-1, 4.56 ERA

QUICK HITS: Scheduled to make his seventh start of the season, third at home, and first career start against the Angels tonight…Made 23 starts in his rookie season with the Orioles in 2022…Went 4-7 with a 4.90 ERA (64 ER/117.2 IP) with 111 strikeouts to 46 walks…Was one of 13 O’s players (7 pitchers) to make their debut in 2022…Started on the bump for Adley Rutschman’s debut on May 21 vs. Tampa Bay…Tossed 16.0 consecutive scoreless innings across four starts from August 26 to September 6… Acquired by the Orioles along with RHP Kyle Brnovich, RHP Zach Peek, and RHP Isaac Mattson from Los Angeles-AL in exchange for RHP Dylan Bundy on December 4, 2019…Originally drafted by the Angels in the fourth round of the 2018 First-Year Player Draft out of New Mexico State…Teammates at NMSU with INF Joey Ortiz.

LAST TIME OUT: Did not factor into the decision in his first career start against the Pirates on May 12 at Oriole Park…Allowed one run on three hits with one walk and six strikeouts in 6.0 innings…Threw 89 pitches, 61 strikes.

CAREER AGAINST ANGELS/AL WEST: Making his first career start against the Angels and sixth career start against the AL West…Did not factor into the decision in his season debut on April 3 at Texas, allowing one hit with one walk and two strikeouts in 1.2 innings…Exited the game in the second inning with a right foot contusion after being hit by a line drive from Jonah Heim…Made four starts against the division as a
rookie in 2022, pitching to a 1.03 ERA (3 ER/26.1.2 IP) and a 2-0 record… Earned his first career win at Oriole Park on September 22 vs. Houston, allowing just two hits while striking out 10 in 8.2 scoreless innings.

SWING AND A MISS: In his last start on May 12, Bradish registered 16 swings and misses, his second-most in a game in his career behind the 17 he recorded on August 26, 2022 at Houston…Bradish has tallied 31 swings and misses over his last two starts after recording 27 in his first four outings this season.

SAVING HIS BEST FOR THE BEST: Made 14 starts against teams that qualified for the 2022 playoffs in his debut season, going 4-4 with a 4.24 (36 ER/76.1 IP) ERA…The Orioles owned a 9-5 record in those games…He went 2-0 against Houston, tossing 8.0 scoreless innings on August 26 at Minute Maid Park and throwing another 8.2 shutout frames on September 22 at Oriole Park

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