Wednesday, May 31, 2023
UFC Tickets

MLB Preview: Texas Rangers (19-13) at Los Angeles Angels (19-15)


WINS AND LOSSES: Texas beat the Angels last night, 10-1, moving to an even 1-1 record to begin this 10-G, 10-day road trip to LAA (1-1 + today), SEA (3 G), and OAK (4 G)…team had a 4-2 record on the 6-G homestand that preceded this trip…Texas has lost 2 of 3 after a 4-G win streak (4/28-5/2) that matched Rangers’ longest in ‘23 (also 4-0, 4/16-19)… team is 5-2 in last 7 G since a season-long 4-G losing skid… TEX is 5-6 in last 11 G, but still 11-7 in last 18 G and 15-9 in last 24 G beg. 4/9…have a 16-13 record last 29 G since club’s 3-0 start to the season.

• At 19-13 (.594), TEX owns the 4th-best record in the A.L. to only TB (.794, 27-7), BAL (.667, 22-11), and BOS (.600, 21- 14), and club’s 19 wins rank T5th in A.L…the .594 win pct. is 5th in MLB and 19 wins rank T8th in MLB.

• The 19-13 start marks Rangers’ best 32-G start to a season since 2013 (20-12), one of the 8 best starts in Texas history.

• TEX enters today at 6 G above .500…high point of the season was 7-over on 2 occasions (14-7 thru 4/23, 18-11 thru 5/2)…Texas has been .500-or-better following every game in 2023…prior to ‘23, team had not been at least 7-over since 7/13/19 (50-43)…TEX recorded its 19th win in 2022 on 5/25.

WITH A WIN today, Texas could:
• Match season high-water mark at 7-over .500 for a 3rd time (also 14-7 on 4/23 and 18-11 on 5/2).

• Reach 20 wins within the 1st 33 G of a season for just 8th time in TEX history (last 20-13 in 2013), and match the 4thbest 33-G start ever by the Rangers.

• Improve to 3-0-0 in series vs. A.L. West opponents in 2023, including 2-0-0 on road, this after going 3-8-1 in road division series in 2022.

• Win a series after dropping the series opener for the 3rd time in as many series victories.

• Move to 3-0 in rubber games, 8-3 in series finales, and 6-0 in Sunday contests.

STANDINGS: The Rangers enter today with a 1.0-G lead on 2nd-place LAA in the A.L. West…TEX was in a tie for 1st after loss on Friday for 1st time since 4/27…TEX has been alone or tied atop the division for 36 of the season’s first 37 days (exception: 4/8)…TEX has been alone in 1st place for 20 of the last 22 days (beg. 4/14)…have had sole possession of 1st place in the West for 26 days overall in ‘23…reached a season-best 3.5-game lead in the West with off day on 4/20, which was team’s largest lead in the West since the end of the ‘16 campaign (won division by 9.0 G)…from 2017-22, TEX had 1 day in which it held, or was tied for, 1st place in the West (1-0 on 7/24/20, tied for division lead).

SERIES STUFF: TEX is 6-3-1 overall in series this year, going 4-1-1 at home 2-2-0 on the road…club did not win a 6th series in 2022 until 5/26-29/22 at OAK…TEX won 4 straight series 4/10-23, longest such span since going 5-0-0 from 6/15-7/1/18…club has won 2 of last 3 road series, although team was swept in last away series 4/24-26 at CIN (0-3).

ON ROAD: Last night’s win snapped Rangers’ season-long 4-G away losing skid…club is 7-7 (.500) on road, T8th-best away win pct. in A.L…the Rangers’ 14 road games are T2nd-fewest in MLB (13-TB, 14-TEX/HOU/SD)…before the current 1-4 span, Rangers had won previous 4 straight and 6 of prior 7 road contests…the 4-G win streak (4/16-19) was longest away win streak since a 4-0 span 6/11-17/22.

VS. LOS ANGELES-AL: Clubs have split 1st 2 meetings in ‘23…TEX finished 10-9 vs. LAA in 2022, securing a season series victory vs. Halos for 3rd time in last 4 years…last night’s win snapped 4-G skid vs. LAA, as TEX has won 7 of 13 and 10 of last 17 G vs. Halos…are 5-6 at The Big A since the start of ‘22, but are 12-25 here beg. 9/11/18.

• As club moves through this all-A.L. West road trip, Texas is 5-3 in division games in ‘23, taking both series (at HOU/vs. OAK)…went 7-16 in last 23 division road games last year.

EVERYTHING EOVALDI: With his win last night (8.0 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 5 SO), Nathan Eovaldi now has consecutive outings of at least 8.0 SHO IP (CG SHO on 4/29 vs. NYY)… he is the 1st MLB pitcher with back-to-back scoreless starts of 8.0+ IP since STL’s Jack Flaherty on 9/3/19 and 9/8/19… no A.L. pitcher had done it since HOU’s Dallas Keuchel (6/25-30/15) and SEA’s Mike Montgomery (6/23-30/15) did it to finish June 2015…some other notes on the Texas native:

Eovaldi is the 1st TEX pitcher to post back-to-back starts of 8.0+ SHO IP since Martín Pérez did it in 3 straight 4/13-23/14…the last Texas right-hander to accomplish the feat?: Ed Correa on 9/17/86 and 9/22/86.

• With 8.0 SHO IP last night, Eovaldi extended his current scoreless streak to a career-high 20.0 innings…it is the longest active scoreless streak in MLB, T3rd-longest in Majors in 2023…his previous longest scoreless streak was 19.0 IP, 7/20-8/10/18 w/ TB/BOS.

IP Pitcher Team Dates
28.0 Zac Gallen ARI 4/4-26
25.2 Gerrit Cole NYY 4/11-27
20.0 Max Fried ATL 3/30-5/5
20.0 Nathan Eovaldi TEX 4/24-current

LIVE AT THE 10 SPOT: The Rangers scored 10 runs last night, the MLB-best 8th game of 10+ R for Texas this season…matches most 10-R games ever
by TEX thru 32 G in a season (also 8 in 1998)…last night was the 1st time for TEX to score 10+ runs in a game without hitting a HR since 8/21/21 at BOS (also a 10-1 win).

LARGE IN THE MARGIN: With last night’s 9-run win, the Rangers now have a season-best +77 run differential on the year, 2nd-best in MLB (TB is +114)…the +77 is highest figure for Texas at any point in any season since finishing 2013 with a +94 run margin.

BIG 9TH: Texas scored 7 R in the 9th inning last night, the club’s largest 9th inning since a 7-run 9th on 5/7/12 at BAL, nearly 11 years to the day…the next night in Baltimore (5/8/12), Josh Hamilton would produce a 4-HR game.

ROBBIE STILL GOING: Robbie Grossman’s current 14-G hit streak is the 2nd-longest active streak in MLB (15-BOS’ Masataka Yoshida), longest by a Ranger in ‘23, and ties the longest of his career (also 14 G, 8/13-27/13).

• Grossman’s 14-G hit streak is T8th-longest in club history by a switch-hitter, the longest by a batter hitting from both sides of the plate for Texas in 32 years…last switch-hitting hit streak of 14+ G by a Ranger was from Ruben Sierra, who posted the 2 longest such streaks in Rangers history in 1991: 18 G from 6/12-30/91, and 16 G from 8/30-9/15/91.

CLUTCH HITS: TEX went 8-for-12 with RISP last night, matching a season high for hits w/ RISP in a single game (also 4/19 at KC)…Rangers lead MLB w/ a .340 BA w/ RISP this season, over 45 points higher than the next-closest team (ARI-.293).

DON’T IT MAKE YOU WANNA GET SOME SUN?: Texas has gone 7-4 in day games this season, losing 2 of last 3 G after a 6-2 start…team is 2-3 in day games on the road… Rangers’ 11 day games this season are T4th-fewest in MLB (10-HOU/LAD/SD, 11-TEX/ARI).

SHORTS: Leody Taveras leads all MLB hitters with a .556 BA (10-18) in his 5 day tilts…Johan Heim in 9 day games in ‘23: .371/.405/.743/1.148 (13-35), 3 HR, 4 2B, 9 RBI, 10 R…Heim has hit safely in 8 straight and 8 of 9 day games overall, and his .371 day BA ranks 5th in the A.L…Seattle is only division foe that TEX has yet to face entering this week’s series…today’s game will air on ESPN+ outside of local team markets.

(4-1, 2.41)

TODAY: The 32-year-old left-hander is scheduled to make his 7th start of the season in today’s rubber match with the Angels…ranks 7th in A.L. / 2.41 ERA, best among Rangers starters (2.67-deGrom)…is the only TEX pitcher with 5.0+ IP and 3-or-fewer ER allowed in each of his 1st 6 starts to open 2023…earned his 4th win of the season (T1st w/ Eovaldi) after turning in a quality start last Sun. vs. NYY (6.0 IP, 6 H, 1 R-ER, 1 BB, 2 SO, 70 pitches/46 strikes)…has 5.0+ IP in 36 consecutive starts dating to 2022, 4th-longest streak in Rangers history (see below)…made 2 starts for Venezuela in the 2023 World Baseball Classic, posting no record and a 9.82 ERA (4 ER/3.2 IP)…after returning to the Rangers on a one-year free agent deal for 2022, he elected to stay with Texas in 2023 on a one-year deal after accepting the club’s qualifying offer in November…spent the first 11 seasons of his professional career with the Rangers (2008-18), and has been with the organization for 12 of his 15 years as a pro…left the club for 3 years for brief stints with Minnesota (2019) and Boston (2020-21)…has a 59-58 record with a 4.21 ERA over 179 games/166 starts in his Rangers career, ranking among club’s all-time leaders in starts (7th, 166), wins (T11th, 59), and strikeouts (12th, 657)…since 2016, his first full campaign after returning from ‘Tommy John’ surgery, has the 2nd-most starts (181) and 3rd-most innings pitched (1040.1) in A.L…saw two seasons cut short in 2014-15 following ‘Tommy John’ ligament reconstruction surgery on his left elbow on 5/19/14.

LAST START: Earned his 4th win of the season after turning in a quality start last Sun. vs. NYY (6.0 IP, 6 H, 1 R-ER, 1 BB, 2 SO, 70 pitches/46 strikes)… his 70 pitches thrown were T3rd-fewest by a Texas starting pitcher in an outing of 6.0+ innings since pitches were first officially tracked in 1988: 60-John Koronka on 6/29/06 at SF (6.0 IP), 69-Ryan Drese on 7/2/04 at HOU (6.0 IP), 70-Pérez today vs. NYY (6.0 IP)/Nick Tepesch on 7/26/14 vs. OAK (6.0 IP)/Mike Morgan on 7/29/99 at BAL (6.0 IP)…Pérez has logged 5.0-or-more IP and allowed 3-or-fewer R in each of his 6 starts this season (2.41 ERA), becoming the 1st Ranger to open a season with 6-or-more starts of that ilk since Lance Lynn in 2020 (7 straight).

ONE AWAY FROM THE RYAN EXPRESS: Has logged at least 5.0 IP in each of his last 36 starts (beg. 4/23/22), the longest such streak ever by a Texas left-hander and 4th-longest in club history overall: 56-Yu Darvish (2012-14), 41-Lance Lynn (2019-20), 37-Nolan Ryan (1989-90), 36-Pérez (2022-23)…it is the longest active streak of 5.0+ IP…has gone 16- 7, 2.68 ERA (66 ER/222.0 IP), 188 SO/74 BB during the streak.

VS. LOS ANGELES-AL: Is 8-6, 3.87 (50 ER/116.1 IP) in 23 G/19 GS in his career vs. LAA, going 1-1, 3.71 ERA in 3 starts against them last season… owns a 5-3 record with a 3.40 ERA (19 ER/50.1 IP) in 10 games/8 starts at Angel Stadium, not allowing more than 2 ER in his last 6 games in Anaheim…has lasted 5.0-or-more innings and allowed 3-or-fewer runs in 5 of his last 6 starts against LAA dating back to 5/23/19…during stretch: 4-1, 2.70 ERA (10 ER/33.1 IP) with only 1 HR allowed.

2023: Owns a chase rate 34.3% on the season, which ranks in the 87th percentile in MLB (Savant)…has faced just 25 LH batters in his 6 starts, with those hitters going 7-for-25 w/ one XBH, 1 BB, 6 SO…3 of 1st 6 GS have been against A.L. opponents…has gone 3-0 with a 3.24 ERA (6 ER/16.2 IP) in those starts (4/14 at HOU, 4/19 at KC, 4/30 vs. NYY)…has tossed at least 70 pitches in all 6 starts this season and is currently on a 2-game streak without allowing a HR.

KING OF THE ROAD: Took loss in 1st road start of ‘23 (4/8 at CHC), but has bounced back with consecutive wins on the road (Wed. at KC, 4/14 at HOU) to notch his 2nd and 3rd wins of the year before a tough-luck ND at CIN on 4/25, leaving the game with a 6-1 lead and seeing TEX lose to by a score of 6-7…saw slightly better results in 16 road starts (7-4, 2.86 ERA) than in 16 starts in Arlington (5-4, 2.92 ERA) last season…ranked among A.L. road leaders in quality starts (T4th, 12), ERA (6th), and wins (T11th)…opened the 2022 campaign with club-record 25.0 consecutive scoreless innings on the road…Rangers went 10-0 in Pérez’s first 10 away outings last season, tied for the longest season-opening road undefeated streak by a starting pitcher in WSH/TEX franchise history (also 10, A.J. Griffin from 4/8-8/9/16)…Pérez’s career ERA splits are nearly identical on the road (4.36) vs. at home (4.40), though his home win pct. (.539, 42-36) is significantly higher than his road mark (.468, 37-42).


LEADING OFF: Today, the Angels play the third (1-1) of six games on a homestand against the Texas Rangers (1-1; May 5-7) and Houston Astros (May 8-10)…Halos went 4-2 on last road trip against the Milwaukee Brewers (1-2) and St. Louis Cardinals (3-0)…LAA was 5-2 on last homestand against Royals (2-1) and Athletics (3-1).

STREAK SNAPPED: Last night’s loss snapped Angels season-high five game win streak…Was Halos longest since a seven game streak from Sept. 25 – Oct. 2, 2022.

WINS AND LOSSES: With a 19-15 record, Halos are looking for a victory today to equal the season-high at five games over .500.

ON THE BOARD: Brandon Drury hit a solo HR in the 9th inning last night to get the Angels on the scoreboard… Halos have not been shut out since Aug. 21, 2022 at Detroit…Current streak of 75 games without being shut out is the longest active streak in the Majors and fifth-longest streak in Angels history.

A LOOK AT THE STANDINGS: Angels enter play today in second place in the American League West standings (-1.0 game behind Texas)…With a win today, Halos would move back into a tie with Rangers atop the standings…Last time Angels had at least a share of the A.L. West lead over 35+ games into a season was May 14, 2018 (25-16; tied with Astros for A.L. West lead).

VS. TEXAS: Today is the third (1-1) of 13 matchups this season between the Angels and Rangers…Halos have won four of last five games vs. Texas, dating back to last season…Last year, Texas won season series 10-9.

(since franchise moved to Texas in 1972)

  1. Mike Trout – 44
  2. Reggie Jackson – 43
  3. José Canseco – 40
    *Trout also ranks third in career HR vs. Senators/Rangers franchise all-time behind Reggie Jackson (54) and Harmon Killebrew (48).

WOAH, THAT’S WILD: Friday night, Angels rallied for three runs in the 9th inning to force extra innings and won the game in the 10th when Zach Neto scored on a wild pitch for the walk-off victory…Was Angels first extra-inning win of the year and first walk-off win of 2023…Second straight win when trailing after eight innings…First time Angels won on a walk-off wild pitch since Aug. 5, 2015 vs. Cleveland (run scored by Taylor Featherston).

LEAGUE LEADER: Shohei Ohtani, leads the Majors in opponent batting average (.125), ranks second strikeouts (59) and is sixth in WHIP (0.87).

UNEARNED: Angels have allowed 22 unearned runs this season, which is the most in the Majors.

PLAY FROM AHEAD: Halos have held leads in 28 of 34 games played this year.

ALL OVER THE INFIELD: Gio Urshela is one of five players in the Majors to appear at all four infield positions this season…He has made 11 starts at first base, nine starts at third base, seven at shortstop and one at second base.

NET-OW: Zack Neto has been hit by seven pitches this season, which is tied for second-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).

SURF AND TURF: Wednesday at Busch Stadium, Mike Trout recorded his fifth career go-ahead home run in the 9th inning-or-later and first since June 18, 2022 (Game 1) at Seattle…Jake Lamb hit his fifth career pinch-hit home run last night and tied the game in the top of the 9th inning; it was the Angels first game-tying pinch-hit HR in the 9th inning-or-later since Dallas McPherson on June 29, 2005 at Texas.

500K: Shohei Ohtani matched his MLB single-game career high with 13 strikeouts in last pitching start Wednesday and finished the night with 500 career MLB strikeouts…Is the 10th Japanese-born pitcher with 500 strikeouts in the Majors…Reached 500 strikeouts in 388.2 IP, which is second fastest as a starting pitcher all-time, behind Corbin Burnes (365 IP). (ELIAS).

THE BABE AND I: Shohei Ohtani is one pitching strikeout shy of matching the career total for Babe Ruth (according to ELIAS, Ruth had 501 career pitching strikeouts)…Ruth and Ohtani are the only players alltime with 500+ pitching strikeouts and 100+ home runs in a career.
*Note: Ruth’s overview page on Baseball Reference and list 488 career strikeouts…That does not match his total strikeouts when adding up totals from his individual yearly game logs on the sites

RECENT TRANSACTIONS: Friday the Angels recalled RHP Andrew Wantz from Triple-A Salt Lake…In a corresponding move, LHP Aaron Loup (right hamstring strain) was placed on the 15-day injured list.

ASTROS ON DECK: Following the current series vs. Texas, the Angels will conclude the homestand with a three game series against the Houston Astros…Will be the first meeting of the season between the Halos and Houston…The Clubs will meet a total of 13 times in 2023…Last season, Astros won season series 13-6.

1-1, 7.89 ERA
Pitched 5.0 scoreless innings in last start last Sunday at Milwaukee

• TODAY’S GAME: Making sixth start of the season and third at home…Is in fifth Major League season with Angels…Made Opening Day roster for second consecutive season.

• LAST TIME OUT: Earned first win of the season in last start last Sunday at Milwaukee after tossing 5.0 scoreless innings and allowing two hits and three walks with six strikeouts.

• VS. TEXAS: In six career games (five starts) vs. Rangers, is 3-0 with a 3.23 ERA (30.2 IP – 11 ER) and 31 strikeouts… Last season, was 3-0 with a 3.23 ERA (30.2 IP – 3 ER) and 10 strikeouts in three games (two starts) vs. Texas…Pitched first career complete game on Sept. 4, 2021 vs. Ranges at Angel Stadium (9 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 8 SO).

• AT ANGEL STADIUM: In 32 career games (27 starts) at The Big A, is 6-12 with a 5.55 ERA (147.2 IP – 91 ER)… This year is 0-0 with a 11.00 ERA (9 IP – 11 ER) after two home starts…Last year, was 5-4 with a 5.19 ERA (58.2 IP – 27 ER) in 11 home games (10 starts)…Began career with 12 consecutive winless starts at Angel Stadium, (which was most all-time to begin a career in ballpark history), before earning CG victory Sept. 4, 2021 vs. Texas.

• THROUGH THE ORDER: This season, opponents are batting .299 (23/77) the first two times through the order, but are hitting .533 (8/15) the third time through.

Sports Gaming Digest FREE Digital Sports Magazine Subscription

Related Articles

2023 Major League Baseball Schedule Book

Latest Articles