The Los Angeles Angels open up their three-game weekend series with an American League road tilt with the Detroit Tigers. It has been nothing but disappointment so far this week with the Angels getting swept at home by the Seattle Mariners.
Meanwhile, the lowly Tigers hung tough and split even on the road against the Cleveland Guardians. We’ll see if they can keep their heads above water when playing host to the Angels on Friday. Patrick Sandoval is slated to start at pitcher for the Halos opposite of Detroit's Matt Manning.
Hard not to feel bad for OhtaniShohei Ohtani put the Angels on his back in Wednesday’s series finale against the Seattle Mariners with four hits, four RBIs, two runs and a homer.
And it still wasn’t enough.
The Angels gave up 11 runs on defense, and no one else could come through at the plate when the team needed another helping hand offensively. Fortunately for the Halos, the Tigers aren’t putting up nearly the type of defensive fight the Mariners are capable of in a game. The pitching rotation in Detroit is ranked in the bottom-half of the league with a 4.07 ERA.
So there should be more opportunities for others to join in with Ohtani for another offensive soiree. Oh, and they might not even have to worry about their own pitching rotation imploding. Not only are the Tigers struggling on the mound, but they’re also averaging the least runs per game in the league right now.
As for the pitching, Patrick Sandoval is slated to be the starter with a 3.42 ERA and 3-8 record on the season. He shut out the Mariners in his last road outing. So maybe he’s the right player to pitch confidence into this Angels team.
Tigers are no easy outYes, the Tigers are the worst team right now in the AL Central division. Yes, they have the second-worst record in the entire AL. And yes, they have a losing record in their home building.
But as they showed when splitting even in a four-game series with the AL Central-leading Cleveland Guardians, they are no easy out for any team. They’ll come into Friday’s matchup against an Angels team that has really underwhelmed offensively. Granted, they’re dealing with injuries and a bunch of other issues that have shined a light on one lone fact: It’s Shohei Ohtani or bust in Los Angeles.
That still might be enough to topple a Tigers team that can’t get much of anything going offensively. Whiffing at the plate has been the common theme for Detroit’s batters this season. However, if they can find it within themselves to challenge the Angels’ pitchers like they did Cleveland, things could get interesting on Friday.
Second-year pitcher Matt Manning is expected to start on the mound for Detroit in this game. In only five starts, he’s throwing a 3.24 ERA with 17 strikeouts to his name. So he’ll be coming into this game well-rested with an opportunity to hold off the bats for a team with one of the most electric players in baseball on their roster.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
The Tigers love to have random games where they seemingly show a little life and then it’s right back to the same old struggles.
Rinse, wash and repeat.
That’s what Friday’s game feels like heading into their weekend series with the Angels. They might also be dealing with more than just the Shohei Ohtani show as well with 10-time MLB All-Star Mike Trout possibly returning for this game. So Matt Manning is clearly going to have his hands full dealing with two of the scariest power hitters in baseball.
It’s a recipe for disaster with the Tigers being so limited in how they’re able to respond. They don’t have the bats to get into an offensive shootout with the Halos and their two legendary sluggers. It’s never a good sign when the opponent is the worst at scoring runs with the third-least hits on average. I’m rolling with the Angels in this game.
Full-Game Total Pick
The expected return of Mike Trout will breathe new life into the Angels offensively. Granted, it’s too late to make the desired impact of the team being competitive down the stretch as a potential wild card, but it’s more than enough to terrorize some opponents still left on their schedule, including the Tigers.
Detroit has allowed an average of 5.33 runs in their last three games. They’re getting pounded at the plate as expected, and it’s certain to continue with the Halos coming to town for a visit with their top-two wood choppers back in the batting lineup together again. Give me the over in this one.