The Angels are looking to duplicate those results, this time at Angel Stadium, as they open a season-high 12-game homestand Tuesday night.
The Angels (39-33) closed out a 14-game trip by taking three games from the Dodgers from June 11-13. They batted .315 and averaged 6.7 runs in the series, while the Dodgers hit .196 and struck out 26 times.
The Angels, winners of 17 of 23 in the Freeway Series, will send the struggling Ervin Santana(notes) (6-5, 3.91 ERA) to the mound Tuesday. After winning five straight starts, the right-hander has gone 0-2 with a 9.00 ERA in his last two outings.
Santana gave up season highs of six runs and 10 hits in five innings of a 7-1 loss to Milwaukee on Tuesday.
“There’s nothing I can do but keep focused and keep working hard,” he said.
Santana will be trying to get himself and the Angels back on track after their three-game win streak was snapped in a 12-1 defeat to the Chicago Cubs on Sunday. Los Angeles won two of three in that series, however, and has taken six of its last nine games.
Trying to avoid matching a season-high five-game slide, the Dodgers (38-31) will counter Santana with the red-hot Clayton Kershaw(notes) (7-3, 2.96), who has gone 6-1 with a 1.82 ERA in his last eight starts.
“For me, personally, I think it’s just getting more comfortable,” Kershaw told the team’s official website. “Toward the beginning of the season - the first eight or nine starts - I was having trouble settling. … The first inning was giving me problems, getting my pitch count up, and it made it tough to make it through seven. What I take from what 1/8 manager Joe Torre 3/8 says is that maybe I’m just channeling my energy a little bit better, just able to start more on top of my stuff earlier in the game.”
The left-hander pitched 7 1/3 innings of one-run ball in a 6-2 victory at Cincinnati on Wednesday.
Kershaw, second in the NL with 10.3 strikeouts per nine innings, leads the Dodgers in wins and strikeouts. He is one victory from matching his total of 2009.
Kershaw was 1-0 with a 0.75 ERA in two starts versus the Angels last season. He threw seven shutout innings in a 5-3 victory over them June 21, 2009, as the Dodgers took two of three for their first road series win over the Angels since 2004.
Both teams could be without their starting shortstops in this three-game set. The Angels’ Erick Aybar(notes), 6 for 15 with four runs at Dodger Stadium earlier this month, will be re-evaluated Tuesday after suffering left miniscal damage last Monday against Milwaukee.
“If he’s not ready, he’s not ready,” manager Mike Scioscia told the Angels’ website. “It doesn’t matter if it’s Erick Aybar or anybody else. When he’s ready, he’ll go out and play.”
James Carroll started in place of Furcal in Boston over the weekend and was 0 for 7 during the three-game sweep. The Dodgers are 2-7 in their last nine.
The Dodgers have dropped seven straight versus the AL.