Series Preview: The Angels Angels @ Texas Rangers - Same as It Ever Was

Just because I haven't done this in nearly a year, because the Rangers awesomely ran away with the AL West last season and the standings didn't matter for the majority of the year, let's look at some standing scenarios.

After Sunday, here are the possibilities the Rangers face:

  • They have been swept by the Angels at home and now trail in the AL West by 4 1/2 games.
  • They have lost a series to the Angels at home two games to one and now trail in the AL West by 2 1/2 games.
  • They have won a series against the Angels at home two games to one and now trail in AL West by only half a game.
  • They have swept the Angels at home and have regained an AL West lead which now stands at 1 1/2 games.
So yeah, it's still pretty early for this series to matter too much--as only one of these options would be truly terrible--but it sure would be nice if the Rangers came away with at least a series win and virtually tied with the Angels in the West.

By the time this series is finished, the Angels will have played in Arlington six times before the Rangers have traveled to Anaheim. If the Rangers are going to be battling the Angels all season long, they should probably make sure that they win these contests at home. The Rangers were 7-3 against the Angels at home last season while only 3-6 in Anaheim. After Sunday, the Rangers play the Angels 12 more times, nine of which will be in Anaheim. It's time to hold serve.

Friday, May 13 7:05: RHP Jered Weaver vs. RHP Alexi Ogando

Saturday, May 14 3:10: RHP Dan Haren vs. LHP Derek Holland

Sunday, May 15 2:05: RHP Ervin Santana vs. LHP C.J. Wilson

You remember October baseball in 2010. But do you remember Sunday, Oct. 3? That was the Rangers final game before beginning their run to the American League crown. They lost that day 6-2 to the Angels to finish the season 90-72. The Angels, in winning, were able to win their 80th game. In the bottom of the sixth inning of that game, officially dubbed Fan Appreciation Day, Ron Washington began to pull his starting players from the field for replacements so that his starters could receive an ovation from the crowd for their achievement of a wonderful season and begin to rest them for the upcoming post season appearance. This was an exhibition game for the Rangers. This was the Angels' 2010 World Series.

Apparently, the Angels were hilariously pretty mad about it. After Vlad Guerrero was announced with one out in the bottom of the sixth, Ron Washington came out and replaced him with Matt Treanor. On the very next pitch, Dan Haren did this:

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In case you're bad at lip-reading, that's Dan Haren telling the Rangers' bench that it's "[their] fucking fault" that he threw at a dude because of his immense case of ass pain at the moment. Now, obviously, this is the first time the Rangers have faced Dan Haren since then. 

They say the best revenge is living well as the current AL West and American League Champions, but if ever there were a time to even briefly consider an instance where it would be even sort of nice that the Rangers and Angels played in the National League, it would be for this series. But, I guess it's probably best to leave this one in 2010 where it just looks really embarrassing for the Angels and Dan Haren. But hey, if Mark Trumbo or Peter Bourjos ends up with one between the shoulder blades, at least we'll know whose fault it is.

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Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (21-17, 1st Place AL West)

Rangers 2011 Record vs. Anaheim: 2-1 (All at The Ballpark)

Anaheim's Recent Results: 1-2 Series loss against the Chicago White Sox

Anaheim's Road Record: 12-7

Rangers Ballpark in Arlington Park Factors (LHB/RHB): HR: 120/109 - wOBA: 103/106

SB Nation Angels Blog: Halos Heaven (Don't do it)


Match-up: (as of 5/12)        Rangers  Angels Advantage
Batting
(RAR)
             21.3
            (3th)
13.9
(7th)
Rangers
Starters
(RAR)
23.3 41.6 Angels
Bullpen
(RAR)
-10.8
(30th)
-8.6
(29th)
Angels?
Defense
UZR
-6.6
(20th)
13.9
(2nd)
Angels
Overall RAR + UZR 27.2 60.8  Angels :(

Questions to Answer:

  • How many times will Peter Bourjos get a hit that if he weren't playing the Rangers would have found a glove in this series? I'm thinking at least three.
  • Who is your pick to lead the Rangers in runs scored in this series and who will strike out the most Angels? (I'll say Ian Kinsler and Derek Holland.)
  • Over/Under: 2.5 Errors by the Rangers in this series?
  • How heart-broken are you going to be when Ron Washington names Dan Haren as the 2011 All-Star Game starting pitcher...in Arizona?
  • What makes you sadder about this .gif: Illmyk_medium That Torii Hunter isn't still pretending to be a centerfielder or that Joe Saunder isn't still a pitcher for the Angels?
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