Angels-Rangers Preview

The Associated Press

Kole Calhoun is enjoying a red-hot stretch for the Los Angeles Angels.

That could continue since he is facing a pitcher he and his team simply battered the last time.

Texas Rangers starter Colby Lewis could face a tough assignment Saturday night at home as he tries to help his club avoid a ninth straight loss to the Angels.

Los Angeles (71-49) has won three straight and is enjoying its longest single-season win streak over Texas, taking nine of 11 meetings and all five in Arlington.

Calhoun had a tiebreaking, three-run homer in the fifth inning among his three hits Friday in a 5-4 victory, improving to 13 for 29 during a six-game hitting streak.

''I want to be a catalyst for the offense, get on base, score some runs,'' Calhoun said. ''I want so bad to get on base. ... I'm having fun right there.''

He's 10 for 30 against Texas (47-75) this year, including a four-hit effort July 10 that matched a career high.

Calhoun went 3 for 3 that night against Lewis (8-9, 5.42 ERA), who was rocked for a club-record 13 runs over 2 1-3 innings in a 15-6 defeat. It also marked the most runs allowed by any pitcher in three years.

That outing is part of the reason Lewis has a 7.26 ERA at home, where he is 2-6 in 11 outings. Opponents are batting .350 against him in Arlington for baseball's worst home mark.

The veteran right-hander has responded well since that drubbing, going 2-3 with a 2.51 ERA in his next five starts.

Albert Pujols is 4 for 6 against him and Mike Trout 4 for 11 - including 3 for 6 in two meetings this year. Lewis beat the Angels by yielding two runs over 5 2-3 innings May 2 in a 5-2 road victory.

Rookie Matt Shoemaker (10-4, 3.89) makes his first start for Los Angeles since Aug. 6, when he gave up two runs over six innings in a 2-1 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

The right-hander last pitched when he turned in three perfect innings of relief last Saturday to gain his second relief win in a 5-4, 19-inning victory over Boston.

Shoemaker won his lone start against Texas by giving up one run over 7 2-3 innings in a 5-2 home win June 22. Los Angeles has given him 30 runs of support in five road starts in which he is 4-1 despite a 5.60 ERA.

He will try to become the first Angels rookie to win nine starts since Matt Palmer in 2009.

Adrian Beltre went 2 for 3 two months ago against Shoemaker. He was 4 for 4 on Friday, raising his average to .381 in the season series.

Trout is in a 0-for-11 slide and trying to avoid going hitless in a fourth straight start for the first time in his career. He's mired in a 4-for-32 slump with 11 strikeouts.

The Angels bullpen will receive a boost since rookie right-hander Mike Morin, who has a 2.36 ERA in 41 appearances, is expected to be activated from the 15-day disabled list. He is eligible to come back after missing 13 games with a cut on his left foot.

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