Los Angeles (37-32) at Chicago (30-36)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Chicago, IL
Temp: 68° F
  • Game info: 2:20 pm EDT Fri Jun 18, 2010
  • TV: FSW, CSN
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Carlos Silva’s(notes) successful season for the Chicago Cubs has been an unexpected surprise for most. The Los Angeles Angels, however, know firsthand how difficult it is to beat the right-hander.

Following his first loss in nine decisions, Silva will try to bounce back in Friday’s matchup with the Angels, the team he has the most wins against in his career.

Despite allowing two runs over seven innings, Silva (8-1, 2.89 ERA) saw his unbeaten run come to an end in a 2-1 loss to the Chicago White Sox on Sunday. Silva had been the beneficiary of strong run support before that start, getting average of 6.9 runs in his previous 11 outings.

“I go out there and do my job,” Silva told the Cubs’ website. “I don’t know what’s going to happen, if they’re going to score runs or not. That’s my job, to keep my team in the game.”

Silva has done better than that in 12 career starts versus Los Angeles, going 7-2 with a 3.81 ERA. He hasn’t beaten any other opponent more than five times.

The Cubs (30-36) hope he can deliver another strong performance against the Angels, who are making their first trip to Wrigley Field, as they try to win three straight for the first time since May 22-25. Chicago hadn’t won a series since the end of that streak before taking two of three from Oakland this week, as Kosuke Fukudome’s(notes) single in the ninth inning Thursday gave the Cubs a 3-2 victory over Oakland.

Chicago, however, is facing a Los Angeles team that’s won 10 of 12 on the road, 16 of 22 overall and 20 of 28 in interleague play. The Angels’ 61 wins in June over the last three-plus seasons are most in the majors, although they barely avoided a three-game home sweep by Milwaukee earlier this week.

After giving up 19 runs and 24 hits in the first two games of the set, Joel Pineiro(notes) and Fernando Rodney(notes) combined on a three-hitter in a 5-1 win Wednesday. The Angels improved to 9-1 with a 2.90 ERA when Bobby Wilson(notes) starts at catcher.

“That’s what I’m here for,” Wilson said. “Hopefully we’re going to keep that ERA down and keep those wins going up.”

Given the way he’s pitched this month and in his recent road starts, the Angels (37-32) have to be encouraged by having Scott Kazmir(notes) (6-5, 5.27) on the mound Friday.

The left-hander has won all three of his starts in June with a 2.12 ERA. He has won four straight starts, all on the road, to establish a career best for consecutive road starts won. Kazmir has posted a 2.63 ERA in those outings.

Kazmir did not get a decision in his one start versus Chicago while pitching for Tampa Bay on June 17, 2008, lasting 4 2-3 innings and giving up one run in a 3-2 victory.

While the Angels have never played at Wrigley, Bobby Abreu(notes) has had plenty of success there. The right fielder has batted .352 with 12 homers and 37 RBIs in 29 games at the Cubs’ home park.

The Angels’ trip to Wrigley leaves two-year-old Citi Field as the only current venue at which they have never played.

Los Angeles dropped two of three in its only previous matchup with Chicago on June 11-13, 2004.

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Starting Pitchers

S. Kazmir Hou vs. C. Silva Bos
9-15 Record 10-6
5.94 ERA 4.22
93 K 80
79 BB 24
1.58 WHIP 1.27

Scoreboard

Friday, Jun 18