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American League Preview from The Sports Network



Wednesday, May 8th (All times Eastern)

LA Angels of Anaheim (11-21) at Houston Astros (9-24), 8:10 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: LA Angels - Joe Blanton (0-5, 5.97) Houston - Bud Norris (3-3, 3.89)

(Sports Network) - The Houston Astros eye just their third series win Wednesday in the middle test of a three-game series versus the LA Angels of Anaheim at Minute Maid Park.

The Astros took the opener by a 7-6 score, their most runs in a game since a 9-1 win at Yankee Stadium on April 29. It wasn't easy at first for Houston to snap a six-game slide and win for only the second time in 12 tries, as the Angels grabbed a 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning.

Houston got one back in the bottom half on Jose Altuve's solo homer, then took the lead for good with a five-run third inning. Chris Carter's three-run homer in the frame highlighted the offense and Altuve finished 2-for-3 with two runs scored and a pair of RBI.

Jose Veras tossed a perfect ninth to save it for Jordan Lyles, who earned the win after striking out six in five innings of work. He was charged with three runs before giving way to the bullpen.

"I think I threw the ball a little bit better tonight than I did last outing," Lyles said. "Just from the fact being down 3-0 and then putting up some zeros against a pretty good offense."

The Astros were outscored, 26-2, in the previous two games versus Detroit and won their two series over Seattle from April 8-10 and again April 22-24. Houston will finish its 10-game homestand (1-4) with three games versus Texas this weekend.

Bud Norris draws the start for Houston Wednesday and he is 3-3 with a 3.89 earned run average in seven starts. He is only 1-2 in his previous four outings and did not record a decision in Friday's 4-3 loss to the Tigers despite permitting just two runs in seven innings. He struck out a season-high seven batters. Closer Jose Veras couldn't preserve the save.

"Bud Norris did what a No. 1 starter does," Astros manager Bo Porter said. "When his team is light in the bullpen after a 14-inning game, he goes seven innings and held one of the best offensive teams in our league to two runs."

Tigers Hall of Fame skipper Jim Leyland concurred.

"Norris pitched really good," Leyland said. "I was impressed. We don't see these guys much. They throw good pitchers at you."

The Angels wasted a decent outing from C.J. Wilson and the left-hander allowed seven runs, two of which were earned, in 6 1/3 innings with 12 K's and two walks. It was Wilson's first loss of the season (3-1) and the five-run third inning put the left-hander behind the eight ball.

"For the most part, C.J. did a great job," said Angels catcher Hank Conger, who didn't help his battery mat with three errors on the night. "Today, I just wasn't able to back him up. Today really fell on me."

Anaheim did club three homers in its third straight loss and eighth in 10 tries, as Mark Trumbo belted a three-run shot in the first inning, Alberto Callaspo hit a two-run shot and Howie Kendrick went deep.

The Angels will try to keep the bats going and the errors to a minimum when winless right-hander Joe Blanton toes the rubber Wednesday. At 0-5 with a 5.97 earned run average in six starts, Blanton has dropped back-to-back trips to the hill and pitched well in a 5-1 loss to Baltimore last Thursday. He allowed three runs -- two earned -- in eight innings to remain winless in his first stint with the Halos.

"Joe pitched a strong ballgame, there's no doubt about it," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "On a normal night, if we're swinging the bats the way we can, we are going to win that game."

Blanton said a mechanical adjustment with his delivery has allowed him to hide the ball better and not tip his pitches to opposing batters. He'll try to keep the Astros at bay this evening and is 2-0 with a 2.57 ERA in five career games (4 starts) against them.

The Angels took two of three from Houston from April 12-14 in Anaheim. The Astros last won a series against the Angels back in 2004, winning two of the three meetings from June 18-20.

05/08 10:34:01 ET

  • ACC: Syracuse at NC State

    Saturday at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Florida at Kentucky

    Saturday at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Pac 12: Stanford at Arizona

    Saturday at 4:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NHL: Hurricanes vs. Minnesota

    Tomorrow at 8:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
ECU 56
TEMPL 70
Final
NCCU 69
NCAT 58
 
Final
DET 4
ATL 6
 
Final
TAM 2
BAL 3
 
Final
PIT 1
NYY 2
 
Final
HOU 6
PHI 3
 
Final
MIA 1
STL 4
 
Final
SFG 8
CHC 6
 
Final
CIN 3
CLE 9
 
Final
CWS 1
LOS 6
 
Final
ANA 3
MIL 2
 
Final
CHC 2
OAK 2
 
Final
SEA 9
SDP 4
 
Final
KAN 5
TEX 4
 
Final
ARI 4
COL 3
 
Final
WAS 5
NYM 4
 
Final
MIN 9
BOS 8
 
Final
BAL 5
TOR 0
 
Final
CHI 108
OKC 105
 
1st
POR 17
DAL 17
 
Final
MDES 89
MRGST 76
 
Final
SIENA 71
NIAG 54
Final
LEH 62
AMER 68
 
Final
SCAR 74
ARK 78
Final
LAF 89
BU 64
 
Final
PETE 63
FAIR 33
Final
BUCK 90
HC 83
 
Final
UNF 71
LIP 57
 
Final
TENNM 65
MORE 76
Final
COL 72
NAVY 62
 
Final
ECU 56
TEMPL 70
Final
FATL 62
UAB 59
 
Final
FLGC 62
USCU 63
 
Final
CHAR 84
WKENT 88
 
Final
MINN 63
WISC 76
Final
MIZST 48
SILL 55
Final
COPST 92
DELST 104
 
Final
FIU 59
MTST 54
Final
HAMP 69
NORST 80
 
Final
NCCU 69
NCAT 58
 
Final
COOK 72
SCST 62
 
Final
APP 67
TXST 64
 
Final
GSOUT 76
TXARL 64
 
Final
LAMON 50
UGST 58
 
Final
ODU 67
MARS 50
Final
TXSA 74
RICE 76
 
Final
FAM 64
SAV 57
 
Final
LATU 72
SMISS 61
 
Final
JST 72
ALAAM 54
 
Final
GRAM 46
ALAST 70
 
Final
TXSOU 94
ALCOR 73
 
Final
NICST 77
CARK 70
 
Final
TAMCC 85
HOUB 72
 
Final
NARZ 58
PORST 51
 
Final
LAM 61
SHSU 67
 
Final
ARKST 76
SALA 81
 
2nd
PVU 70
SOUTH 72
 
Final
LALAF 75
ARKLR 69
 
Final
NO 85
SELA 79
 
Final
INCWORD 64
ABCHRIST 52
 
9:00pm Tonight
MVSU 0
ARKPB 0
 
2nd
ARZ 85
CAL 53
 
Final
WASH 47
COL 64
 
Final
WEBER 74
IDAHO 63
 
2nd
UCONN 53
MEM 52
 
Final
UTEP 83
UNT 60
 
Final
STEPH 92
NWST 66
 
Final
SUTAH 69
SACST 65
 
2nd
DAVID 76
VCU 52
 
Final
IDST 81
EWASH 85
 
2nd
QUIN 65
MAR 68
 
2nd
BEL 97
EILL 60
 
2nd
DRAK 35
BRAD 38
 
Half
LBSU 30
CSNO 25
 
Half
UCI 25
CSFU 22
 
Half
UCD 25
UCR 30
 
11:00pm Tonight
ARST
STAN
11:00pm Tonight
WASU
UTAH
Final
BOS 3
CAL 4
Final
WAS 1
MIN 2
Final
PHI 3
STL 1
Final
FLA 3
DAL 4
Final
TAM 4
TOR 2
Final
NAS 3
NYI 4
3rd
ARI 2
VAN 0
 
1st
LOS 2
MON 0