The Detroit Tigers haven’t won a road series against the Los Angeles Angels in nearly nine years. They’ll try to end that streak beginning Monday night in the opener of a three-game series at Angel Stadium.
Detroit’s offense will need to be a lot more productive than it was against the Oakland A’s during the weekend. The Tigers combined for one run in 31 innings while getting swept in the three-game series.
The Tigers (47-65) will catch a Los Angeles team that’s also spiraling after a record-breaking 13-3 start to the season.
The Angels (55-58) have lost six of their past seven games to drop three games below .500 for the first time this season, have been without two-time American League Most Valuable Player Mike Trout for the past four games because of a sore wrist, and a weekend report surfaced that manager Mike Scioscia will not seek to renew his contract after this season, his 19th with the club.
Scioscia vehemently denied the report before and after the Angels lost 4-3 at the Cleveland Indians on Sunday.
“Nothing has changed since we talked last October,” Scioscia told the Orange County Register. “That’s the best way I can put it. There’s always chatter out there. The only word I have is poppycock. That’s all it is.”
The Tigers won three of four against the visiting Angels from May 28 to May 31. The last time they won a series at Angel Stadium was when they took two of three on Aug. 24-26, 2009.
Since 2010, Detroit is 7-21 in Anaheim.
Detroit left-hander Matthew Boyd will make his first start at Angel Stadium and second against the Angels in his four-year career.
He faced Los Angeles on May 28 in Detroit and blanked the Angels on two hits in five innings, picking up the win in the 9-3 victory. Scioscia was impressed with Boyd’s change of speeds and pitch locations.
Boyd (6-9, 4.22 ERA) will be aiming to win a third straight start for the second time in his career. His past two victories came after he went 0-5 in a six-start stretch from June 19 to July 20, raising his ERA from 3.23 to 4.62 in that span.
In his latest appearance, Boyd threw eight shutout innings in a 2-1 win over the visiting Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday, his best outing since losing a no-hitter with one out in the ninth inning against the Chicago White Sox on Sept. 17.
Boyd threw 105 pitches on Tuesday, one short of his season high.
“His pitch count got up there, or we might have sent him back out there (for the ninth inning),” Tigers manager Ron Gardenhire told MLB.com after the game. “I was kidding with him. I told him, ‘If you hadn’t tipped your hat, I would’ve left you in.'”
Angels right-hander Nick Tropeano (4-6, 4.94) will make his 14th start of the season and second of his career against the Tigers.
He helped win the only game of the four-game series in Detroit earlier this season, allowing two runs and seven hits in 5 1/3 innings of the 9-2 victory.