It took a week, but the Angels finally got back in the win column last night with a 3-2 victory over the Houston Astros. A win that combined great starting pitching from Alex Cobb and timely hitting from Jack Mayfield, snapped the team’s season-long six-game losing streak and at least ended the 2021 season series against the Astros on a high note, even though they finished 6-13. As the homestand wraps up this weekend, the Halos will look to spoil the Seattle Mariners chances of getting in the postseason as they currently sit just two games out of contention behind three AL East teams (Red Sox, Yankees and Blue Jays).
Leading off the series on the mound will be southpaw Jose Suarez. The 23-year-old Venezuelan enters play tonight 7-8 with a 3.67 ERA and 79 strikeouts in 21 games (12 starts). Suarez has took to the hill twice against the Mariners this season, once in relief and once in a starter’s role, combining to go 1-0 with a 2.35 ERA. His one start came back on July 11 in Seattle, picking up the win after tossing five innings and allowing just one run on three hits and sitting down four via strikeout.
September continues to show growth for the young starter as Suarez in three starts (all against AL West foes) is 2-1 with a 2.21 ERA, 18 strikeouts in 20.1 innings and a BAA below two (.192). Manager Joe Maddon has been on record saying that the pitching rotation needs to improve moving forward into 2022, but with the play of Suarez, it will give Maddon plenty to think about if he [Suarez] deserves one of the five, or six, starter slots next season.
For the Mariners, they will send out right-hander Logan Gilbert for his 23rd start of the season. The former first round pick by the Mariners in 2018 begins play 6-5 with a 4.74 ERA and 120 strikeouts across 108.1 innings pitched. Gilbert has squared off against the Angels twice this season, finding success going 2-0 with a 2.61 ERA and striking out a total of 16. His most recent start versus the Angels came back on July 18, spinning 5.1 solid innings of two-run, four-hit baseball and matching a season-high with nine strikeouts. After the month of August that saw Gilbert pitch to a dismal 0-3 record and 9.13 ERA, September has been a total 180. Gilbert is 1-0 with a 2.01 ERA in 22.1 innings, tossing back-to-back quality starts against the Red Sox and Royals.
I’m The Captain Now
Coming into this season, Jack Mayfield at best would have made any team for a bench role, but due to a season-ending injury for Anthony Rendon (Hip) and the release of Jose Iglesias, Mayfield saw a large jump in playing time for the first time in his career. This opportunity has led to many highs and lows, but over the past two games, he definitely found his clutch gene. After a bases-clearing double Wednesday night to give the Angels a 5-3 lead, the former Oklahoma Sooner played hero last night with a two-run double down the right field line, which would inevitably be the game-winning hit.
During the first seven games of this final homestand, Mayfield is batting .269 (7-for-26) with 1 HR, 6 RBI, 2 Runs Scored and 4 Doubles, while recording a hit in five of the seven matchups. Mayfield did have a breakout game against the Mariners back on July 17 at the Big A, going 2-for-3 with a home run (solo - 1st of the season) and double in a 9-4 Angels win.
In 13 faceoffs, the Angels currently trail the season series 5-8 (3-4 at Angel Stadium, 2-4 at T-Mobile Park) with six games remaining (including tonight). Here is how the two teams stack up offensively:
Angels: .267 Avg. | 119 H | 20 HR | 64 R | 28 2B | 32 BB | 110 SO | 7 SB
Mariners: .236 Avg. | 102 H | 15 HR | 63 R | 19 2B | 47 BB | 133 SO | 7 SB
Angels News & Notes
- Starting Rotation for the rest of the series vs. Seattle: Saturday - RHP Jaime Barria and Sunday - RHP Shohei Ohtani
- LHP Reid Detmers is scheduled to start with Triple-A Salt Lake on Monday - If the rotation stays at five men, he would get one last start on the final day of the season on Monday, October 3
- Roster Moves: LHP Jhonathan Diaz recalled from Triple-A Salt Lake as RHP Kyle Tyler placed on 10-Day IL with right toe sprain (retro to Sept. 22)
- If 2021 couldn’t get any weirder, the Angels grounds crew pulled out the tarp at Angel Stadium due to light rain during player workouts this afternoon... don’t worry, the tarp came off at 5 p.m. and the game will be played!