video thumbnail

CWS@LAA: Weaver solid over 6 1/3 to pickup 19th win

After spending the last four days rooting for the Rangers to beat the A's so they could gain ground in the American League Wild Card race, the Angels will be doing just the opposite in their weekend series against Texas.

Taking a 9-4 loss to the Mariners on Thursday, the Halos sit two games back of the A's for that final playoff spot with six to play, while the Rangers hold a four-game lead in the AL West over the A's after a 9-7 victory against them on Thursday.

"We've got a lot of business to take care of. You take it one game at a time," Angels right fielder Torii Hunter said. "We've got a lot of work to do."

On the hill to begin the three-game set in Arlington on Friday will be Angels ace Jered Weaver and Rangers right-hander Ryan Dempster.

Weaver earned his third straight win on Sunday against the White Sox, his 19th victory of the season, a career high. Grinding it out through 6 1/3 innings, he finished the day allowing just one run on five hits.

However, the right-hander hasn't had much luck in Texas this season. In two starts at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Weaver has surrendered 10 runs on 15 hits in 9 2/3 innings.

Mike Napoli is 5-for-9 with a home run against Weaver, while Michael Young is 4-for-11 and Mitch Moreland is 4-for-6.

However, manager Ron Washington still believes to have success against the Angels and into the postseason, it will come down to solid pitching, something Dempster has delivered as of late.

The right-hander is 6-1 with a 2.93 ERA over his last seven starts and is 3-0 with a 4.56 ERA in four outings at Arlington this season.

"If we pitch well, we'll be fine. When we play teams like the Angels, Mariners and A's, they can pitch. So we have to pitch, too," Washington said. "We're confident that if our pitcher goes out and does well, we're going to win the ballgame."

Angels: Scioscia to keep Pujols at DH
• In the Angels final six games of the season, Albert Pujols will likely see more time at designated hitter in an attempt to keep him healthy if team makes it to the postseason.

Pujols had been alternating between first base and DH over the past week, but manager Mike Scioscia had him at DH for the second consecutive game on Thursday.

"He is hanging in there," Scioscia said of Pujols, who suffered a right calf injury in August. "He's had some leg issues for the last month and I think there is some compensation that is involved when you try to play with one part that is injured. Your body is going to compensate in other ways. It can affect you."

Rangers: Darvish slated for Sunday start
• Yu Darvish, the Rangers' hottest starting pitcher of late, threw long toss on Thursday as he prepares for Sunday's start against the Angels.

Darvish, who missed Tuesday's scheduled start with a stiff neck, will throw from a mound on Friday and if he continues to improve, will start on Sunday.

"He's not tentative for Sunday," Washington said. "If Sunday rolls around and he hasn't pitched, it will be Sunday."

Worth noting
• Rangers rookie Martin Perez is still slated to start Monday's game at Oakland after allowing five runs and failing to get out of the first inning in Wednesday's 9-3 loss to the A's. Washington said Scott Feldman, who made an emergency start for Darvish on Tuesday, was not a candidate for Monday's start.

• The Rangers are 8-8 against the Angels this season, but have won the season series against them each of the last three years.

MLB.com Comments