Owner of the fourth-best ERA in the American League, Jarrod Washburn will try to end the regular season with a winning record when the AL West champion Los Angeles Angels continue a three-game series with the Texas Rangers at Ameriquest Field.
Washburn, who has been the victim of injury, poor run support and a few bullpen collapses this season, is coming off another typically strong effort. The 31-year-old left-hander allowed two unearned runs and five hits over six innings in last Saturday’s 7-3 win over Tampa Bay after missing his previous two turns due to tendinitis in his left forearm.
The effort evened his record at 8-8 and dropped his ERA to 3.23, best among Angels starters, including AL Cy Young Award candidate Bartolo Colon (3.48).
Winning for just the second time since July 14, Washburn yielded no more than three earned runs for the ninth time in his last 10 outings.
“My arm felt good tonight,” said Washburn. “I was happy with how I felt. I didn’t know what to expect coming in, because I haven’t been throwing a lot, so I’m pleased with the outcome.”
Washburn hasn’t won consecutive starts since winning his first two decisions of the year from April 27-May 2.
The Angels, preparing for next week’s AL division series, got five scoreless innings from John Lackey in Friday’s series-opening 7-1 win over Texas, improving to 12-2 in their last 14 games.
Garret Anderson hit a three-run homer for Los Angeles, which was swept in the opening round by eventual champion Boston last October.
Texas’ Michael Young, the AL batting leader at .332, went 0-for-4 to end his career-high 25-game hitting streak.
The Rangers remained at a club-record 259 homers, five short of tying the major league mark set by the Seattle Mariners in 1997.