No team has been as hot this month as the Oakland Athletics, who continue their three-game series against the visiting Los Angeles Angels on Tuesday.
Oakland has won four straight and is 10-2 in June following an 8-5 win on Monday, when Sean Murphy delivered a two-run homer and reached base four times.
Sean Manaea allowed one run over 5 2/3 innings, extending a streak of stellar performances from the Athletics’ starting rotation. Oakland starting pitchers own a 1.51 ERA over the past six games covering 35 2/3 innings.
The Angels outhit the A’s 14-9 on Monday but still saw their season-high six-game winning streak come to an end.
The team also received an update on injured star center fielder Mike Trout, who has been out since May 18 with a strained right calf. Manager Joe Maddon said Trout was evaluated on Monday and is likely a month away from returning to action.
The Angels will look to begin a new winning streak behind starter Andrew Heaney (4-3, 4.37 ERA), who recorded his third consecutive win last Tuesday in an 8-1 victory over the Kansas City Royals. Heaney allowed one run with seven strikeouts over 6 2/3 innings and has a 2.41 ERA in his past three starts.
The 30-year-old left-hander is 2-3 with a 4.34 ERA in eight career starts against Oakland and has struggled to contain Elvis Andrus (9-for-27 with three homers).
Oakland starter Frankie Montas (6-6, 4.37) is looking to return to the win column after losing for the fourth time in his past five starts last Thursday. The 28-year-old right-hander gave up three runs (two earned) on five hits over 6 1/3 innings in the 6-1 loss to the Kansas City Royals.
Shohei Ohtani is 6-for-13 with two home runs against Montas, who owns a 2-1 record and 3.02 ERA in 10 career games (seven starts) versus the Angels.
The Angels have received a welcome spark from veteran catcher Max Stassi, who was named the AL Player of the Week after hitting .455 with three homers, three doubles and eight RBIs in five games.
Stassi, who missed most of May with a concussion, is the first Angels player to earn the honor since Trout in June 2019.
“I’m shortening up my swing and really trying to keep it compact and keep my balance at 50-50 and not be on my backside,” Stassi said. “So far so good. One day at a time.”
Oakland has moved a season-high 14 games over .500 while receiving steady production from first baseman Matt Olson and third baseman Matt Chapman.
Olson is batting .419 with five home runs and 15 RBIs in 12 games this month while Chapman is 8-for-17 over his past four games.
“When those guys are hitting, we’ve got a good chance to win games,” manager Bob Melvin said. “I mean they’re both just terrific players both offensively and defensively, and they both have a lot of power. When these guys are hitting at the same time, we feel better about ourselves, because they’re both premier players.”
–Field Level Media