AL West Midweek Preview
The Astros are in the midst of another dry spell, yet they still lead the division. At just one game up on the Angels and 4.5 up on the Rangers, the AL West is shaping up to have a wild October finish.
Looking to retain the division lead, the Astros start a two-game set with the Giants Tuesday night before another off day Thursday. Kazmir (1-1, .44 ERA) and Feldman (4-5, 4.46 ERA) match up against Bumgarner (12-6, 3.28 ERA) and Heston (11-6, 3.48 ERA).
The Angels, who lead the wild card race, have two more against the White Sox after dropping the first game of the series last night. The Angels rookie duo of Santiago (7-5, 2.78 ERA) and Heaney (5-1, 2.45 ERA) will look to win the series versus Rondon (4-4, 5.00 ERA) and a TBD tomorrow night.
The Rangers will be squaring off against the Twins, which is a much more important series than was expected this spring. While the Rangers may have a better chance of winning the division than the wild card, the Twins are 12 games back in the Central and will have to get the wild card to make the playoffs.
The Rangers bring Gallardo (8-9, 3.47 ERA), Martinez (7-6, 3.98 ERA) and Hamels (0-1, 5.93 ERA) to the mound to try and out-duel Minnesota's three guns: Gibson (8-9, 3.78 ERA), Pelfry (5-7, 4.06 ERA) and Santana (2-3, 5.40 ERA).
Every series of the season is important, but as the season winds down, the impact seems much greater. The pressure will only mount for the Astros, Rangers and Angels as they play AL West foes or teams vying for playoff spots until the last series of August.
The Astros have 13 games remaining against the Rangers and Angels.
The Angels have 13 games remaining against the Astros and Rangers.
The Rangers have 14 games remaining against the Astros and Angels.
This division is wide open. Mike Napoli is back in Texas. Game on.