Los Angeles (29-15) at Toronto (17-27)

Cloudy Currently: Toronto, ON
Temp: 72° F
  • Game info: 7:05 pm EDT Mon May 24, 2004
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Injuries to key players have not stopped the Anaheim Angels from getting the best record in baseball.

The Angels will try to keep rolling when they begin a three-game series against the slumping Toronto Blue Jays at SkyDome.

Troy Glaus, Tim Salmon, Garret Anderson and Darin Erstad—all of whom have at least 100 RBIs in a season at least once—have been sidelined, depleting the Anaheim lineup.

However, the Angels have won 15 of their last 20 games and have tied the best start in franchise history. Anaheim completed its fifth sweep of the season with an 8-3 victory at Baltimore on Sunday.

Vladimir Guerrero and Jose Guillen continue to excel for Anaheim—a major league-best 14-9 away from home. Guerrero homered for the second straight game while Jose Guillen hit a three-run double.

“We’ve really been playing great lately,” said Guillen, second in the league with 35 RBIs. “I’m not surprised that we’re winning. It’s been a good combination of pitching and hitting. And it’s a lot of fun.”

Players like Shane Halter, Chone Figgins, Jeff DaVanon and Casey Kotchman have provided solid support for Guerrero and Guillen. Halter, who also homered Sunday, is 5-for-17 with two home runs and three RBIs over his last five games.

Kotchman, the Angels’ first-round draft pick in 2001, has not struck out in 46 big league plate appearances since being promoted from Double-A Arkansas on May 9.

“They bring a little different abilities to the table,” said Aaron Sele, the winning pitcher Sunday. “They use speed and defense, rather than power, but they fit in well with this team. So it does take the pressure off Vlad and Jose—even though they’re still producing.”

The Blue Jays, who were swept in three games by Boston over the weekend, have lost four straight and nine of their last 12 after a season-high six-game winning streak.

Carlos Delgado’s two-run single provided the only offense for the Blue Jays in a 6-2 defeat Sunday. Vernon Wells had a single in the fourth inning to extend his hitting streak to 15 games.

The three-game series will be played over four days, with Tuesday off in observance of the Canadian holiday Victoria Day.

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Starting Pitchers

J. Lackey StL vs. J. Miller LAD
14-13 Record 3-4
4.67 ERA 6.06
144 K 47
60 BB 42
1.39 WHIP 1.75