Mike Trout and Jered Weaver have been two of the few bright spots for the disappointing Los Angeles Angels, though neither gave the team anything to celebrate the last time they left the field.
Trout’s status is uncertain due to an injury, and Weaver will be looking to bounce back from one of the worst outings of his career as Los Angeles hosts the Cleveland Indians on Monday night.
After a terrific 2012 season that earned him AL Rookie of the Year, Trout has followed it up by hitting .333 and has reached base in 40 straight games after going 2 for 3 on Sunday.
Trout left the Angels’ 7-5 loss to Houston, though, after experiencing tightness in his hamstring running out a double in the third. He exited after flying out in the fifth, and he’s uncertain if he’ll be ready to play in the series opener.
”It’s all right. I’m just sore,” Trout said. ”It’s not like it popped or anything. It was just a little grabbing, so it shouldn’t be too serious. I didn’t really feel anything until I got to second base. I’ll see how it is (Monday).”
Mark Trumbo and Josh Hamilton homered Sunday, but Los Angeles (55-68) fell for the sixth time in eight games and has dropped 22 of 34.
Weaver (7-6, 3.49 ERA) had gone 4-0 with a 1.49 ERA over his previous five starts after yielding two runs in seven innings of a 5-2 win over Cleveland on Aug. 9. That hot stretch ended Wednesday, though, when he allowed a career worst-tying nine runs in five innings of an 11-3 loss to the New York Yankees.
He had given up 10 runs over his previous seven outings combined.
“You’re going to have some rough games over the course of the season,” Weaver said. ”Nothing I can do. Can’t hang my head. Turn the page and concentrate on the next start coming in.”
The right-hander hasn’t had much trouble with the Indians in recent seasons, going 6-1 with a 1.31 ERA in the last eight starts against them, with six of those outings being in Cleveland. Weaver, though, is 1-2 with a 5.23 ERA in six career home starts versus the Indians, who have dropped nine of 13 after falling 7-3 to Oakland on Sunday.
Ryan Raburn homered as Cleveland (66-58) fell seven games behind Detroit in the AL Central race.
”It’s go time,” said second baseman Jason Kipnis, who extending his hitting streak to six. ”We don’t have time to sit around and fell sorry for ourselves about losing two of three here. It’s time to take care of business.”
The Indians will look to bounce back with help from Danny Salazar, who will be making his fourth career start.
Salazar (1-1, 4.08) allowed three runs - all scoring on two home runs - in four innings of a 3-0 loss to Minnesota in his most recent outing last Monday. The 23-year-old rookie struck out five, though, and has 22 in 17 2-3 innings.
“This kid’s going to be pitching for a long time, and we just thought (we would) give him a little bit of a blow rather than let him grind through one more inning,” manager Terry Francona said. “His stuff is very good. He’s willing to compete. This kid, he’s the real deal, he just needs experience. We just need to monitor right now.”
The right-hander will be making his first start against Los Angeles, which had won four straight in the series prior to Cleveland’s 6-5 win Aug. 11.