THE STORY: The Los Angeles Angels edged Seattle on Thursday to complete a 3-4 road trip and remain 3 1/2 games behind first-place Texas in the American League West. The Angels try to take advantage of a nine-game homestand as they meet the Minnesota Twins in the opener of a three-game series on Friday. Minnesota salvaged the finale of a three-game set at Chicago on Wednesday, posting just its third victory in 14 games.
TV: 10:05 p.m. ET, FSN North (Minnesota), FSN West (Los Angeles), MLB Network
PITCHING MATCHUP: Twins RH Carl Pavano (6-11, 4.62 ERA) vs. Angels RH Tyler Chatwood (6-9, 4.35 ERA).
Pavano lost his fifth straight decision Saturday as he allowed six runs – five earned – in 6 2/3 innings against Detroit. The 35-year old is 1-6 over his last 11 starts and hasn’t won since July 7 at Chicago. Pavano faced the Angels on May 29, yielding five runs over eight innings in a losing cause.
Chatwood will make his 24th start of his first major-league season in place of Jered Weaver, who was pushed back a day in order to attend his grandfather’s funeral in Oregon. The 21-year old lost his last three decisions, allowing 16 runs in 13 2/3 innings, and five of six before being demoted to Triple-A Salt Lake on Aug. 18. Chatwood faced the Twins in Minnesota on May 27, settling for a no-decision after yielding four runs in 5 2/3 frames.
ABOUT THE ANGELS (74-63): Los Angeles added some reinforcements as rosters expanded to 40 on Thursday. The Angels recalled pitcher Horacio Ramirez, outfielder Jeremy Moore and infielders Andrew Romine and Efren Navarro from Salt Lake. Romine entered Thursday’s win at shortstop for Maicer Izturis, who was hit by a pitch in the thigh while leading off the first inning and departed after 2 1/2 frames. Vernon Wells is 9-for-23 (.391) with four home runs and eight RBIs in his career against Pavano. Bobby Abreu (.333) and Alberto Callaspo (.400) each have two homers and eight RBIs vs. the veteran righthander.
ABOUT THE TWINS (57-79): Right-handed prospect Kyle Gibson is expected to undergo Tommy John surgery in New York next week. Gibson, who has a partial tear of his ulnar collateral ligament, was attempting to rehab the injury without going under the knife. Reliever Jim Hoey is expected to be recalled from Triple-A Rochester before Friday’s game. Hoey went 1-2 with a 7.71 ERA in 17 appearances earlier this season.
FINAL PITCH: Los Angeles’ Howie Kendrick has been an offensive force lately. Kendrick has hit safely in 11 of his last 12 games, belted six homers in his last 10 contests and collected 13 RBIs in 14 games.