|1:10 PM PT2:10 PM MT3:10 PM CT4:10 PM ET16:10 ET20:10 GMT4:10 1:10 PM MST3:10 PM EST3:40 PM VEN0:10 UAE (+1)3:10 PM CT, August 13, 2017
Safeco Field, Seattle, Washington Attendance: 43,199
Angels face Mariners with five-game winning streak
Los Angeles Angels at Seattle Mariners
- The Angels and Mariners last faced off in July of this year at Angel Stadium with the Mariners taking two of three, and outscoring their division rival 15-7 in the series. Dating to the beginning of 2015, these clubs have split their last 22 games at Safeco Field, each winning 11 times.
- The Angels topped the Orioles, 5-1, on Wednesday, taking the last two games of the series, and finishing up their nine-game homestand with a mark of 6-3. Los Angeles now heads back on the road where it is just 24-32 on the year (33-26 at Angel Stadium).
- The Mariners topped the Athletics, 6-3, in Oakland on Wednesday, sweeping the two-game series, and finishing up their nine-game road trip with a mark of 6-3. Seattle has won two straight, and four of its last six games at Safeco Field.
- Tyler Skaggs took the loss on Saturday in his first start since April, allowing three runs over 4.0 innings against the Athletics. Skaggs is 1-1 with a 4.42 ERA in three career starts against the M's at Safeco Field.
- James Paxton picked up another win last Friday, allowing two runs and striking out seven over 6.0 innings against the Royals at Kauffman Stadium. Paxton has now won seven consecutive starts -- tied for the longest single-season streak of any Seattle pitcher all-time.
- Nelson Cruz went 2-for-4 with two home runs against Oakland on Wednesday, giving him five dingers and improving his batting average to .414 in the month of August. Cruz has 38 career homers against the Angels -- most of any MLB player since he joined the league in 2005.
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SEATTLE -- Andrelton Simmons chuckled when asked if the Los Angeles Angels had begun scoreboard watching now that they're in the thick of the American League's playoff race.
"We can't root for everybody, it's too early," said the shortstop, whose Angels have won the first three games of their series in Seattle to take over sole possession of the second and final AL wild-card spot. "It's not just this team we've got to beat to make the postseason. We've got to continue to play good baseball regardless of whom we're playing against, really. But it's even bigger when it's somebody that's fighting for the same thing."
The Angels (60-58) have won five games in a row, including a 6-3 victory Saturday, to move a half-game ahead of the Minnesota Twins (58-57). The Mariners (59-59), Tampa Bay (59-59) and Kansas City (58-58) are all one game behind.
The key, at least in this series, has been the bullpens.
"We just know at some point we're going to get the ball every night," said Angels reliever Keynan Middleton (4-0), who has earned the victory in each of the past two games. "We're going to do our jobs because we're in this and going to make this wild-card thing exciting."
The Angels' bullpen is 3-0 and has allowed three runs in 10 1/3 innings in the series. Mariners relievers are 0-3 and have allowed 13 runs (12 earned) in 10 2/3 innings.
"Our bullpen ... these guys keep taking the ball and making pitches," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "We're not going to get there (the postseason) unless the bullpen is pitching as it has. They've been very effective."
Friday night, the Angels came back from a four-run deficit, tying the score in the seventh inning and scoring the winning run on an unearned run in the ninth of a 6-5 decision.
They rallied for their 35th come-from-behind victory of the season Saturday, tying the score in the seventh and getting a two-run double from designated hitter Albert Pujols in the eighth to break the deadlock.
"It's not the first time (for a comeback)," Pujols said. "We have great chemistry. You've always got 27 outs. As long as we have one left, we're going for it."
Added Simmons: "That's what we do, especially late in the game. We never give in. We make the pitchers earn their outs and we put up good at-bats. ... The game is really never over for us. We've done it enough times that we know it."
Angels manager Mike Scioscia commended the veteran leadership on his club.
"Each game has its own life. You can't do anything about yesterday. All you can do is pour your heart into today," Scioscia said. "We've got through a lot of adversity and are in a real pennant race.
"We're still in long-season mode right now. You could put utmost importance on every game but we need to play free and play loose. We'll see in the next month which teams we need to jump over. Every game is important, but you can't put abnormal pressure on yourself."
The Angels, who started a nine-game trip in Seattle, and Mariners were tied going into the ninth inning both Thursday and Friday and tied entering the eighth Saturday.
"It's a great start to the road trip," Pujols said. "This is what you want because you know you're making up a game (when you win)."
The Angels will try to keep it going Sunday when they send right-hander Parker Bridwell (6-1, 3.00 ERA) to the mound against Mariners left-hander Ariel Miranda (7-5, 4.65).
The Angels are 10-1 when Bridwell pitches, with the lone loss June 30 in his only previous appearance against Seattle, in which he also faced Miranda. Bridwell allowed a career-high five earned runs on 11 hits in six innings of a 10-0 loss in Anaheim.
Miranda is 4-0 with a 2.61 ERA in five career starts against the Angels, including 2-0 this season. He also beat them 11-3 on May 4.
"We've got to get back on the right track," Mariners manager Scott Servais said. "We've had these ups and downs. The guys are battling their butts off and we've got Miranda on the mound (Sunday)."
Updated August 13, 2017