|1:07 PM PT2:07 PM MT3:07 PM CT4:07 PM ET16:07 ET20:07 GMT4:07 1:07 PM MST3:07 PM EST3:37 PM VEN0:07 UAE (+1)2:07 PM CT, May 22, 2022
Angel Stadium of Anaheim, Anaheim, California Attendance: 40,042
Angels hope for return of Taylor Ward vs. A's
Oakland Athletics at Los Angeles Angels
- The Angels took three of four games in Oakland when these teams met last weekend. The A's have won four straight and nine of their last 11 in Anaheim, however, outscoring the Angels 52-27 in those games.
- Oakland lost the rubber match of a home series against the Twins on Wednesday, falling 14-4. It was the most runs the A's have allowed since a 14-2 loss at home to the Giants on September 20, 2020.
- Luis Barrera had three hits and an RBI in the loss on Wednesday, his first career three-hit game. Barrera hit his first major league home run in Game 1 of last Saturday's doubleheader against the Angels.
- Paul Blackburn has a 1.67 ERA through seven starts this season. He's the 10th A's pitcher since 1913 with an ERA below 1.70 in his first seven starts, and just the third since 1991, joining Sean Manaea in 2018 (1.63) and Sonny Gray in 2015 (1.65).
- The Angels were swept in a three-game set at Texas this week, the first time they've lost three consecutive games this season. In the series, the Angels allowed a combined seven runs in the first inning, six runs in innings 2-6, and 10 runs in innings 8+.
- Shohei Ohtani went 0-for-5 on Wednesday, his first game going 0-for-5 or worse this season and the 12th such game of his career. The Angels are 7-5 in those games.
- Harper breaks thumb on pitch from Snell
- Astros eye rare series win over Yankees
- Surging Red Sox look to extend run to 7
- Gonsolin aims to become first to 10 wins
- McClanahan looks to help Rays sweep Bucs
The Los Angeles Angels are hoping to have right fielder Taylor Ward back in the starting lineup Sunday afternoon when they host the Oakland Athletics in the final game of a three-game series in Anaheim, Calif.
Ward is listed as day-to-day but was not in the lineup Saturday in the Angels' 5-3 win over the A's, the result of his run-in with the right field wall on Friday.
Ward made a running catch of a long fly ball by Oakland's Tony Kemp, slamming face-first into the wall in the ninth inning. He had to leave the game and was cleared after undergoing concussion protocol. However, he was diagnosed with a neck stinger and experienced numbness in his arm.
The Angels felt comfortable enough in Ward's potential to release veteran outfielder Justin Upton at the end of spring training, and Ward has more than lived up to expectations.
He has a higher batting average (.370), on-base percentage (.481) and slugging percentage (.713) than Mike Trout (.310/.422/.667), and ranks second on the team to Trout in home runs (nine) and extra-base hits (17).
Ward said that a big part of his success is his confidence, along with not being intimidated by the idea of being in the major leagues as opposed to the minors.
"I really try to think about how this game is the exact same as down there," Ward said. "(Pitchers) down there miss (on location of pitches), and guys up here miss also. The lights are just brighter and there are more distractions here. It's great, but you have to turn the page and get back into the zone."
Left-hander Patrick Sandoval (2-1, 1.91 ERA) will take the mound for Los Angeles, his seventh start of the season. He faced the A's his last time out, getting a victory after allowing just one run and four hits in 6 1/3 innings.
Sandoval is 1-3 with a 1.78 ERA in five career starts vs. Oakland.
Cole Irvin (2-1, 2.93 ERA) will make his sixth start of the season for the A's but first since April 30 because of shoulder tendinitis. Before the injury, the left-hander was pitching well, allowing just two runs in 16 innings over his previous three starts.
A big part of Irvin's success this season before the injury was improving in high-leverage situations -- last year, opposing hitters batted .324 against him with runners in scoring position, the worst in the majors. So far this season, opposing hitters are batting .227 (5 for 22) with runners in scoring position against him.
"I think experience has a lot to do with that," Irvin said. "Being in it a few times and understanding it's OK to let one run score on a ground ball that gets a double play. Just trying to simplify it and not stress myself out a little too much. I think I learned a lot last year in situations of pitching with guys on base."
Irvin is 2-2 with a 2.90 ERA in five career starts against the Angels.
--Field Level Media
Updated May 22, 2022