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Preview: Mariners at Angels

Current Conditions – Anaheim
Wind: WNW 3
5-Day Forecast GAME: Seattle Mariners (74-81) at Los Angeles Angels (80-74)
DATE/TIME: Sunday, September 27 – 3:35 PM EST
WHERE: Angel Stadium of Anaheim, Anaheim, California

The Los Angeles Angels attempt to extend their winning streak and potentially climb into a playoff spot when they host the finale of their three-game series against the Seattle Mariners on Sunday. Los Angeles put itself in position for a sweep Saturday as David Freese led off the bottom of the ninth inning with his 12th home run to snap a 2-2 tie and give the club its fourth consecutive victory.

The Angels remain one-half game behind Houston for the second American League wild card and pulled within four of first-place Texas in the West with eight contests remaining. The Mariners lost their fourth in a row to fall to 3-5 on their nine-game road trip and 40-40 away from home on the season. Seattle’s Nelson Cruz, who is tied with Baltimore’s Chris Davis for the major-league lead with 43 home runs, is looking to become the second Mariner to top the majors (Ken Griffey Jr., 56 in 1997) and first player to lead the league in back-to-back years for different teams since Babe Ruth hit 29 for Boston in 1919 and 54 for the New York Yankees the following season. Cruz swatted a major league-high 40 homers with the Orioles in 2014.

TV: 3:35 p.m. ET, ROOT (Seattle), FSN West (Los Angeles)

PITCHING MATCHUP: Mariners RH Hisashi Iwakuma (9-4, 3.67 ERA) vs. Angels RH Jered Weaver (7-12, 4.86)

Iwakuma has been superb of late, going 4-1 over his last five starts while allowing two runs or fewer in each victory. The 34-year-old native of Tokyo is coming off a triumph at Kansas City on Tuesday in which he scattered three hits and struck out 10 over seven scoreless innings. Iwakuma improved to 8-2 lifetime against Los Angeles in his previous outing, allowing one run and four hits with nine strikeouts in six frames.

Weaver’s disappointing season continued Monday, when he surrendered five runs and nine hits over 5 2/3 innings in a loss at Houston. The 32-year-old Californian has pitched well at home since returning from injury, going 2-0 in his last four turns at Angel Stadium while allowing two runs or fewer in each outing. Weaver took the loss against Iwakuma on Sept. 16, falling to 14-12 lifetime versus the Mariners after giving up three runs and six hits in 4 2/3 frames at Seattle.


1. Angels RHP Huston Street’s status is unknown as he suffered an apparent leg injury in the ninth inning Saturday and was helped off the field.

2. Mariners 21-year-old Dominican SS Ketel Marte belted his first career homer Saturday, giving him at least one hit in 12 of his last 13 contests – a span during which he has recorded six multi-hit performances.

3. Los Angeles OF C.J. Cron has homered in two straight games and collected five RBIs over his last three.

3. Los Angeles RHP Matt Shoemaker is questionable to start against Oakland on Tuesday because of stiffness in his right forearm.

PREDICTION: Mariners 4, Angels 2