Series Preview: O's @ Angels, 2-5 May

Tilly wants to get the O's back on track. - Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

The West Coast swing continues with a four game series against the Angels. Tillman, Gonzalez, Garcia, and Hammel for the Birds. Blanton, Vargas, Hanson, and Richards for the Halos.

The series in Seattle turned out to be full of high-scoring affairs. The O's dropped two of three, but have four games to have four games to redeem themselves before an off day (finally!) and a trip home. They'll head to Anaheim Los Angeles for a series against an Angels team that has gotten off to a slow start and is now sitting fourth in their division.

2 May, 10:05pm: Chris Tillman @ Joe Blanton
Career Numbers Tillman vs. Angels Blantonvs. O's
IP 6.2 42.0
ERA 4.05 5.36
FIP 5.23
4.32
Slash Line (Past Teams) .292/.346/.500
.307/.354/.460
Slash Line (Current Players) .091/.091/.091
.328/.348/.597

Tillman's numbers against the current Angels team are probably the lowest you'll ever see. No, it isn't a typo, but he's faced just three players from the current lineup. Josh Hamilton leads the way with 6 PAs and he's 0-6 with 3Ks. Meanwhile, Joe Blanton has several prior appearances against the Orioles, most of them coming during interleague play when he was a member of the Phillies. He's off to a poor start in 2013, sporting an era north of 7.00. Current Oriole players have racked up 69 PAs and it would appear they've hit Blanton fairly well. It should be noted, however, that only three players have more than 10 PAs.

Maybe hot: Nick Markakis (6-12, 1.288 OPS)

Maybe not: Nate McLouth (3 for 16, 4K)

3 May, 10:05pm: Miguel Gonzalez @ Jason Vargas
Career Numbers Gonzalez vs. Angels Vargas vs. O's
IP 7.0
40.0
ERA 1.29 2.03
FIP 4.13 3.63
Slash Line (Past Teams) .130/.200/.261
.242/.285/.362
Slash Line (Current Players) .133/.235/.333
.258/.289/.409

Gonzalez made one start against the Angels last season - including a lineup that consists of most current players - and made out extremely well. He struck out Mike Trout twice in three at-bats. A lone mistake to Mark Trumbo was the extent of the damage. Any bets on whether or not that homer came in the 6th inning? Jason Vargas made his way to the Angels this offseason in a trade for Kendrys Morales (who just had himself a nice game against the O's). He's been fantastic against the O's over his career. Not a single player with more than 10 PAs has managed to reach even an .800 OPS. Oddly enough, Jason Hammel has a double in 3 ABs.

Maybe hot: Nolan Reimold (1.111 OPS in 9 PA)

Maybe not: Nick Markakis (.583 OPS, 20 PA), Adam Jones (.450 OPS, 20 PA)

7 May, 4:05pm: Freddy Garcia @ Tommy Hanson
Career Numbers Garcia vs. Angels Hanson vs. O's
IP 196.0
11.0
ERA 2.66
1.64
FIP 3.20
4.86
Slash Line (Past Teams) .228/.280/.336
.317/.453/.390
Slash Line (Current Players) .309/.367/.600
.233/.333/.267

The Orioles will call up Freddy Garcia from AAA Norfolk to make this start. He's got a long career against the Angels dating back to 1999 and has had some success. That was, of course, back when he was a much more effective pitcher. His more recent stats.....not so great. Four players sport an OPS great than 1.00, albeit in small samples. Josh Hamilton has four hits - three of them have left the ballpark. Hanson is a bit of a reclamation project for the Angels. He is but 26 years old, but one can be assured his shoulder probably doesn't look like it. His velocity is down significantly this year (88 MPH from 90-91 last season). He's always had control issues, and has walked 11 Oriole batters in 11 innings pitched.

Watch out: Josh Hamilton (1.468 OPS, 13 PA), Howie Kendrick (1.645 OPS, 12 PA)

8 May, 3:35pm: Jason Hammel @ Garrett Richards
Career Numbers Hammel vs. Angels Richards vs. O's
IP 16.2
5.1
ERA 7.02 13.50
FIP 4.86 11.57
Slash Line (Past Teams) .309/.405/.412
.462/.533/.846
Slash Line (Current Players) .263/.378/.316
.211/.265/.295

Hammel has over 16 innings of work against the Angels and although his numbers don't appear great, current numbers peg him as a better pitcher against this lineup. He hasn't been the same pitcher he was last year, however, and could be dealing with "elbow tightness." Something to keep an eye on, methinks. Garrett Richards is a 24 year old pushed into the rotation due to Jered Weaver's injury. He has one career start against the O's and it didn't go well. Not enough stats to post a hot or not line, but both Matt Wieters and Ryan Flaherty had homers in that game.

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