Los Angeles Angels (55-37) PK, 8 at Oakland A’s (50-42), 10 pm Eastern Friday
by Zman of Predictem.com
The second-place team in the American League West gets a shot at the division leader when the Oakland A’s and the Los Angeles Angels commence a three-game weekend series Friday night at McAfee Coliseum.
Baseball Bookies are listing this game, which matches starting pitchers Jon Garland (8-5, 3.76) for Los Angeles vs. Oakland’s newly-acquired Sean Gallagher (3-4, 4.45, with the Cubs this year), at right around a pick ’em, with a total of 8.
The Angels just took two of three games from the Rangers in Texas, and the A’s just took three of four at home from the Mariners. So going into the last weekend of play before the All-Star break, the first-place Angeles lead the second-place A’s by five games in the AL West.
The Angels are a ML-best 29-17 on the road this year, and 47-45 vs. the run line.
Oakland is 30-22 at home this season, and 49-43 vs. the run line.
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LA has taken six of 10 games from the Athletics so far this season, with the totals going 5-4-1, as the games have averaged 9.6 total runs per.
Last year, the A’s took the season series from the Angels 10 games to nine, while the totals went 5-13-1, as the games averaged just 7.3 total runs per.
Gallagher will be making his first start for the A’s after coming over in a trade that sent Rich Harden to the Cubs earlier this week. Over his last three starts for Chicago, including a mediocre effort vs. San Francisco last Thursday, Gallagher gave up eight ER and 23 baserunners in 17 IP. The Cubs went 46 in Gallagher’s starts this year, the totals 5-5.
Over his last three starts, including a complete-game six-hitter vs. Toronto last Sunday, Garland has allowed six ER and 22 baserunners (hits + walks) in 22 IP. LA is 108 in Garland’s starts this year, the totals 5-11.
LA ranks 18th in the majors this year in team batting at .258, 26th in team OBP at .319, 22nd in team slugging at .391, and 22nd in scoring at 4.3 runs per game.
Oakland ranks 25th in batting at .248, 21st in OBP at .322, 28th in slugging at .375, and 23rd in scoring at 4.3 RPG.
The A’s may want to try and run vs. the Angels, who, according to Yahoo Sports, have allowed 27 consecutive base-stealers to steal safely. But Oakland only ranks 19th in the majors in SBs this year with 50, through 92 games.
The Los Angeles bullpen, over its last five games, has allowed eight ER and 20 BR in 14 2/3 IP.
The Oakland pen, over its last five games, has given up five ER and 25 BR in 17 2/3 IP.
On the injury front, Oakland OF Ryan Sweeney (.354, 30 RBI this season) is listed as doubtful for Friday’s game after dislocating a finger Thursday.
The totals are 34-53 in Angels games this season, 34-51 in A’s games, and 21-28 in games played at McAfee Coliseum, which are averaging 7.4 total runs, 2nd-least among all ML ballparks this year.
Zman’s Pick: We like Garland and the Angels tonight.