Athletics-Angels Preview

The Associated Press

Jered Weaver was hardly at his best in Oakland earlier this month. The Los Angeles Angels ace has usually fared much better when facing the A's in Anaheim.

He'll seek to win a fifth consecutive home start against Oakland while leading Los Angeles to its longest win streak at Angel Stadium in nearly eight years Wednesday night.

Weaver (7-4, 3.31 ERA) gave up season highs of six runs and 11 hits in six innings of a 6-3 loss in Oakland on June 1.

"I think he just left some pitches up," Josh Donaldson said after getting a two-run single off him that day.

Weaver had been 8-1 with a 0.87 ERA in his previous 11 starts against the Athletics (39-26).

"This is a totally different A's club," Weaver said at the time. "Guys who can get on base at the bottom of the order and who can do the little things."

The right-hander, though, has allowed one run in 27 1-3 innings to win his past four home starts against them and owns a 0.78 ERA in the last eight.

He's 4-1 with a 2.04 ERA in his last five outings in Anaheim overall, including a win over the Chicago White Sox on Friday. Weaver yielded two runs over six innings while striking out a season-high nine in an 8-4 victory.

He'll be opposed by Tommy Milone (3-3, 3.68), who is 3-0 with a 2.11 ERA in his past six starts. The left-hander hasn't received a decision in the last two, giving up three runs over six innings in both.

That was also his line in both of his starts versus the Angels this year, not getting a decision either time, and he's 2-0 with a 2.96 ERA in his last four against them.

Milone gave up a three-run homer to Collin Cowgill in Oakland's 11-3 win May 31, and the outfielder ended Tuesday night's game with a solo shot in the 14th inning that gave the Angels a 2-1 win.

Cowgill was a triple shy of the cycle for the Angels (36-28), who extended their season-high win streak to five games and moved within 2 1/2 of Oakland for the AL West lead.

"Hey, what can you do?" A's manager Bob Melvin said. "They played as hard as they could, both teams did. After a while, everybody is trying to win it with one swing. Unfortunately, we weren't at our best today offensively."

After batting .272 and averaging 6.3 runs during a 7-2 stretch, Oakland has totaled two runs and 12 hits in this series. The A's haven't endured a three-game sweep in Anaheim since Sept. 27-29, 2010.

Los Angeles has won six in a row at home for the sixth straight season but hasn't had a longer winning streak in Anaheim since a seven-game run in August 2006. The Angels have posted a 2.14 ERA while winning 11 of 13 at home.

Josh Hamilton is batting .476 in his five games in Anaheim since returning from left thumb surgery and went 2 for 5 with an RBI on Tuesday.

Mike Trout is batting .386 with 17 RBIs in his last 16 overall contests and has a 1.364 OPS in his last five against the A's.

Hamilton and Cowgill are a combined 13 for 30 (.433) with three homers against Milone.

Eric Sogard and Alberto Callaspo each went 3 for 3 against Weaver earlier this month, and Jed Lowrie was 2 for 3 with a solo homer. While Callaspo is 1 for 27 since that game, Donaldson (0 for 21), Lowrie (0 for 20) and Sogard (1 for 12) are also mired in slumps.

"They're grinding right now," Melvin said. "It's difficult to go this long without a hit, and the longer it goes, the tougher it is. But you've got to fight through it, and it makes you tougher."

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