The Los Angeles Angels are in need of a spark. They’re hoping a volatile game on Wednesday did the trick.
The Angels look to make up ground in the AL West when they open a four-game series with the slumping Seattle Mariners Thursday at Angel Stadium.
The Angels (62-59) lost for the fifth time in eight games on Wednesday, falling 9-3 to the Texas Rangers. Los Angeles and Texas are tied for second-place in the West, 6 1/2 games behind Oakland.
“Baseball is baseball,” Donnelly said. “Things have a way of working themselves out.”
Scioscia closed the clubhouse for 25 minutes after the game to calm his team and get it refocused.
Maicer Izturis homered for the Angels, who have scored three or fewer runs in each of their last five losses.
The last-place Mariners (56-64), who trail Oakland by 12 games, have had their own struggles. They lost 4-0 to the Athletics on Wednesday for their season-worst seventh straight defeat.
Seattle had not dropped seven straight since June 25-July 2 last season and have not dropped eight in a row since a nine-game losing streak July 2-11, 2004. All seven of the Mariners’ defeats have come at the start of an 11-game road trip.
Veteran starter Jamie Moyer (6-11, 4.40 ERA) will look to get Seattle back on track. He gave up five runs and 10 hits—including two homers—in six innings of Saturday’s 5-4 loss at Texas.
For the ninth time this season, the Mariners did not score any runs for the 43-year-old left-hander, who ranks last in the American League with a 3.52 run support average.
“The only thing I can do is try to work effectively and work quick, and get our defense to the offensive side,” said Moyer, who is 1-5 with a 6.33 ERA over his last eight starts. “It happens. I don’t know what else to say.
“It’s frustrating. It is. I’ve been on the downside of it, the upside of it, and now the down side, in the past two years. But you choose to play the game, and you’ve got to pay the piper.”
Moyer has given up 25 homers in 24 starts this season. He is 18-15 with a 4.84 ERA in 46 career appearances, including 41 starts, against the Angels.
In two starts against Los Angeles this season, he is 0-1 with a 4.61 ERA.
The Angels will counter with Kelvim Escobar (8-10, 3.89), who gave up five runs in six innings of Saturday’s 5-2 loss to the New York Yankees. The defeat was the first since June 25 for the right-hander, who went 3-0 with a 2.77 ERA in between.
Escobar is 4-6 with a 5.12 ERA in 25 career appearances, including 12 starts, against the Mariners. He is 1-1 with a 4.50 ERA in two starts versus Seattle this season.