Ervin Santana was on top of the world last year. He threw a no-hitter in Cleveland, the eighth in Angels history, which just part of a stretch of stellar pitching for Santana. The no-hitter was the second game in a five-start stretch that saw Santana allow exactly one run and one of 10 consecutive quality starts.
Santana was supposed to be a key cog in one of the best starting rotations in baseball this season, but like just about everything else nothing has gone right yet for the Angels in 2012. Santana has made six starts this season, and he has six losses.
In each of Santana's last five starts, the Angels have been shutout, including Friday night's 4-0 loss to Henderson Alvarez and the Toronto Blue Jays. Per the Elias Sports Bureau, Santana is the only pitcher in major league history to have his team shutout in five straight starts.
Santana pitched well Friday night with 10 strikeouts in eight innings, allowing three runs, but that is more than zero so Santana got stuck with the loss. Again.
Still, it's hard to label Santana 'hard luck' this season as he has allowed 11 home runs in 39 innings and sports a 5.59 ERA. Dating back to last season, Santana is 0-9 with a 5.09 ERA in his last 10 starts and the Angels have lost all 10 games. Santana is just one of many who have to turn things around if the 10-17 Angels are to contend as expected this season.
For more news and notes on Santana and the Angels, be sure to read Halos Heaven.