Jim Cowsert-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

Angels vs. Rangers: Halos can't sweep, now one game away from elimination

The Angels needed to sweep Sunday's doubleheader and their series against the Rangers to keep pace in the Wild Card race. They took a loss and are on the edge of elimination.

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Angels lose ground in wild card race

The Los Angeles Angels were eliminated in the American League West with their loss on Sunday night. Their elimination number for a wild card spot is now one.


Angels are on their last legs

The Los Angeles Angels and Texas Rangers wrapped up their three-game series on Sunday night with the second game of a day-night doubleheader. The Halos needed to get the sweep in Arlington, but despite a big early lead, they took an 8-7 loss.

The Halos jumped out to a big 4-0 lead in the first inning. Albert Pujols hit an RBI double to drive in Erick Aybar and open the scoring. Torii Hunter followed up with an RBI single and Mark Trumbo launched a two-run homer -- his 32nd of the year.

The Rangers got one of those runs back in the bottom of the first on an RBI double from Josh Hamilton. In the bottom of the second, David Murphy and Mike Napoli hit home runs off of Ervin Santana, cutting the lead to 4-3. Santana served up the long ball once again in the third, as Napoli hit his second homer of the game to put Texas ahead, 6-4. The Rangers catcher (and former Halo) wasn't finished, as he hit a two-run double in the fifth that made it 8-4 Texas. Napoli had six RBI in the game.

The Angels didn't score again until the seventh inning, when Howie Kendrick hit a three-run homer to cut the Rangers' lead to one run. Unfortunately, the Angels were unable to push across any more runs. With the Rangers win, they clinch a playoff spot, as do the New York Yankees and the Baltimore Orioles. The Angels have an elimination number of one.


Halos wait until the very end to mess with Texas

After trailing for nearly the entire game on Sunday morning, the Los Angeles Angels were able to score late and win the first game of a doubleheader by a final score of 5-4. With the win, the Angels remain two games behind in the Wild Card race and have officially captured the series against the Rangers. They will go for the doubleheader sweep and the series sweep on Sunday afternoon.

Nelson Cruz hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the second to put the Rangers up 2-0 early. Albert Pujols cut the lead in half with an RBI single in the top of the third, but the Rangers answered back with another pair of runs in the bottom of the inning. Josh Hamilton hit an RBI single and Adrian Beltre added an RBI double to make it 4-1 Texas.

In the top of the sixth, Kendrys Morales hit a sacrifice fly to get the Halos another run closer. The top of the seventh inning saw a controversial call, as Maicer Izturis appeared to lead off with an infield single, but the call was discussed by the umpires at Rangers manager Ron Washington's request and overturned. Later in the inning, Mike Trout hit his 30th home run of the season to make it a one-run ballgame.

With two outs in the top of the ninth, Torii Hunter once again continued his amazing string of clutch hits with a two-run double to give the Angels their first lead of the game and make it 5-4. Ernesto Frieri came on in the bottom of the ninth to close out the game and pick up the save.

In perhaps Zack Greinke's final start with the Angels, he gave up four runs on six hits and two walks in 7.1 innings of work, taking the no decision in the process.


Angels, Rangers prepare for doubleheader

Due to heavy rainfall in Texas on Saturday, the Los Angeles Angels and the Texas Rangers will play a doubleheader on Sunday, with the Rangers playing for a spot in the American League playoffs and the Angels chasing an AL Wild Card spot.

The Angels will put Zack Greinke on the mound against Yu Darvish in the first game of the doubleheader. Both pitchers were the original starters for Sunday's game.

Greinke is 6-2 with a 3.40 ERA since being traded to the Angels in July.

"We'll see if Zack can get us some length in Game 1 and then we have a chance to have more pitchers that aren't going to have to throw in two games," Angels manager Mike Scoiscia told MLB.com. "I think it just gives us a better chance with Zack in Game 1 to pitch deep into [the game] and get to a certain point, and then we'll see where we are in Game 2."

Darvish is 16-9 with a 3.90 ERA and is 3-1 with a 4.26 ERA in five starts against the Angels this season.

Derek Holland will start for the Rangers in the afternoon game while Ervin Santana will get the ball for the Angels.

Holland is 4-0 with a 3.77 ERA in his last 10 starts. Santana has pitched less than six innings in eight of his previous 11 starts, going 3-4 with a 7.83 ERA during that stretch. Santana's inability to pitch late into games is why Scoiscia went with Greinke in Game 1.

Game Time: 1:05 p.m. ET

Television Coverage: Fox Sports West

Radio Coverage: KLAA 830, KSPN


Angels-Rangers rained out, doubleheader tomorrow

A driving rain storm in the Dallas area that has lasted for most of the day has caused Saturday's game between the Los Angeles Angels and the Texas Rangers to be rained out. The decision was made nearly four hours after the scheduled first pitch of 1:05 p.m. PT.

The two teams will play a doubleheader tomorrow to close out the series. Game 1 is slated to begin at 10:05 a.m. PT, according to Rangers radio host Bryan Dolgin. If tonight's starters take the mound for the first game tomorrow, the Angels will give Ervin Santana (9-12, 4.93 ERA) the start against Texas pitcher Derek Holland (11-6, 4.50).

Game 2 is scheduled for 4:05 p.m. PT. Zack Greinke (6-2, 3.40) should take the hill for the Angels, provided regularly-scheduled starters for Sunday are still set. He'll face off against Yu Darvish (16-9, 3.90) of Texas.

With five games left, the Los Angeles Angels trail the Oakland Athletics by 2.5 games for the final American League Wild Card spot, while the Rangers are playing to clinch up the AL West division title.


Angels need to keep winning vs. Texas

The Los Angeles Angels kept their chances alive in the AL Wild Card race by beating the Texas Rangers on Friday night. They are two games back with five games remaining, so they'll look to do the same on Saturday.

Ervin Santana (9-12, 4.93 ERA) will take the hill for the Halos, facing off with Derek Holland (11-6, 4.50 ERA for Texas). Santana is 1-1 in two starts against the Rangers for the 2012 season. His most recent outing saw him give up three runs on four hits while pitching five innings, but in the game before that one the Rangers took him for six runs on eight hits, including three home runs, in just 1⅔ innings. Holland is 1-2 with a 6.20 ERA in three starts against the Angels.

Mike Trout had a home run and a triple in Friday night's win, the latest in his success against Texas. He's hitting .348 with six home runs and 19 RBI in 24 career games against the club. If the Angels have any prayer of making the playoffs, they'll need more of that from Trout.

First pitch is scheduled for 1:05 p.m. PT and can be seen on FOX.

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Texas can consider themselves messed with

The Los Angeles Angels and Texas Rangers kicked off a three-game series on Friday night. The Halos made their presence felt in a 7-4 victory and let the Rangers know they're far from finished in the postseason race.

Mike Trout got things started right away as he led off the game with his 29th home run of the game. In the top of the third, Chris Iannetta hit a solo home run of his own. Mark Trumbo stretched the Los Angeles lead to 3-0 with an RBI double in the fourth inning, which would be all the run support that Jered Weaver would need.

Nelson Cruz hit a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the fourth to get the Rangers on the board, but Trumbo hit another RBI double in the top of the sixth to get that run back. The Angels weren't done, as they put together a three-run top of the seventh. Kendrys Morales hit an RBI double to drive in Torii Hunter and make it 5-1 Halos. Howie Kendrick and Trumbo followed up with RBI singles to make it 7-1. Trumbo ended up going 3-for-4 with three RBI.

Cruz hit a solo home run in the bottom of the seventh to make it 7-2. Adrian Beltre hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the eighth to bring the Rangers to within three runs. That home run would prove to be the last gasp for the home team.

Weaver ended up going seven innings, giving up two runs on five hits and two walks, striking out five along the way.

With the win, the Halos remain alive not only in the Wild Card race, but in the American League West, where their elimination number stays at 1.


Jered Weaver, Ryan Dempster duel in Arlington

Just two games back in the AL Wild Card race, the Los Angeles Angels are in desperate need of victories as they hit the final stretch of their season. They'll certainly have their hands full Friday night as they take on the first-place Texas Rangers down in Arlington.

Jered Weaver (19-4, 2.74 ERA) gets the start for the Angels tonight. He tossed 6 innings of one-run ball against theChicago White Sox in his last outing, and has won his previous three starts against Texas. Weaver earned his 100th career win in his last start against them on Sept. 18, giving up three runs in seven innings of work.

Texas will counter with Ryan Dempster (7-2, 4.48), who threw 6 innings of two-run ball in his last start against the Seattle Mariners. He's won seven of the 10 starts he's had since being traded from the Chicago Cubs at the July trade deadline.

The Rangers' magic number to clinch the AL West is down to three.

First pitch is set for 5:05 p.m. PT with coverage on Fox Sports West and KLAA 830 AM.

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