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Rays-Angels preview

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vs. Angels

Tonight-Sunday

What's new: After a dismal 2013, the Angels had been playing up to their expected level as one of AL's best with a lineup led by dynamic Mike Trout, Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton. But since the All-Star break, with Trout slumping and the offense struggling, they are 7-6 after Thursday's 1-0, 13-inning win over the Orioles. They still have questions about the depth of their rotation, though LHP C.J. Wilson is close to returning from the DL. They have done well in supplementing their bullpen with additions of Huston Street, Joe Thatcher and Jason Grilli.

Key stat: The Angels' 33 come-from-behind wins are the most in the majors, including 13 from two or more runs, six from the seventh inning on.

Connections: Rays manager Joe Maddon spent 31 years in Angels organization, last 12 as a major-league coach; 1B coach George Hendrick, RHP Joel Peralta, INF Sean Rodriguez are also former Angels. … Hamilton was a top Rays prospect, pitching coach Mike Butcher had that job with Rays.

Series history: Angels lead 3-1 this season, 86-62 overall, 38-32 at the Trop.

Marc Topkin, Times staff writer

Rays-Angels preview 07/31/14 [Last modified: Thursday, July 31, 2014 11:48pm]
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