Major League Baseball
Preview
LA Angels at Oakland
When: 10:05 PM ET, Tuesday, September 18, 2018
Where: Oakland Coliseum, Oakland, California

The Oakland Athletics failed to take advantage of another team's struggles over the weekend and remain second in the American League wild card race. The Athletics will try to chip away at the deficit and get back in the win column when they return home to host the Los Angeles Angels in the opener of a three-game series on Tuesday.

Oakland sits 1 1/2 games behind the New York Yankees in the battle for the top wild card along with home-field advantage in the wild card game and could have taken the lead over the weekend with wins on Saturday and Sunday, but instead it dropped a pair at the Tampa Bay Rays while watching their chances at an AL West crown dim. The Athletics, who sit four games behind first-place Houston, won seven of eight before stumbling on Saturday and Sunday and will play their next six games at home against sub-.500 clubs Los Angeles and the Minnesota Twins before finishing up the regular season with six on the road at Seattle and the Angels. Los Angeles is sitting in fourth place in the American League West but is set to have an impact on how the races shake out with nine of their remaining 12 games against Houston and Oakland. The Angels will welcome left-hander Tyler Skaggs back to the rotation on Monday while the Athletics counter with righty Liam Hendriks.

TV: 10:05 p.m. ET, FS West (Los Angeles), NBCS California (Oakland)

PITCHING MATCHUP: Angels LH Tyler Skaggs (8-8, 3.78 ERA) vs. Athletics RH Liam Hendriks (0-1, 5.60)

Skaggs lasted pitched on Aug. 11 against Oakland before going down with a groin injury and was roughed up in his last two starts, allowing a total of 17 runs and 18 hits in 6 2/3 innings. The 27-year-old owns 123 strikeouts in 116 2/3 innings this season and was carrying a 2.62 ERA prior to his last two outings. Skaggs was strong at the Athletics on June 15, when he surrendered two unearned runs and struck out eight in seven innings to earn a win.

Hendriks is getting the call to open a bullpen day, marking the sixth time in seven appearances this month that he filled the starting role. The Australia native did not allow a run in any of his last five appearances, surrendering a total of two hits while striking out four over five innings during that span. Hendriks is making his fifth appearance of the season against the Angels and totaled one run allowed and three hits across 2 2/3 innings over the first four.

WALK-OFFS

1. Angels RF Kole Calhoun snapped a 0-for-25 drought with a home run on Sunday.

2. Oakland 1B Matt Olson is 8-for-17 with six RBIs in the last five games.

3. Los Angeles DH Shohei Ohtani tweaked his left ankle in the eighth inning on Sunday but is not expected to miss time.

PREDICTION: Athletics 5, Angels 4
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away East Central West IL
LA Angels 74-76 W1 37-38 37-38 11-21 22-12 31-33 10-10
Oakland 90-60 L2 46-29 44-31 21-11 24-7 33-34 12-8
Last Meeting
LA Angels Oakland
Date Away Home Avg HR OPS Avg HR OPS
8/12/18 OAK 8 LAA 7 .289 1 .872 .343 1 .961
Player Stats
Season Series
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
LA Angels M. Trout .359 14 1.037
Oakland J. Lowrie .352 19 .981
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
LA Angels J. Upton 3 10 12
Oakland M. Semien 5 10 12
Pitching ERA Avg K
LA Angels 4.70 .256 121
Oakland 4.65 .247 93
Season
Batting Player Avg Hits OPS
LA Angels M. Trout .318 139 1.091
Oakland M. Chapman .282 142 .885
Offense Player HR Runs RBI
LA Angels M. Trout 34 94 70
Oakland K. Davis 43 87 115
Pitching ERA Avg K
LA Angels 3.97 .246 1276
Oakland 3.78 .250 1142