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Angels series preview: Will the Rays ever win again?

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Rays head to Anaheim on labor day with work to do. Sitting three games in front of the Orioles in the second wild card slot and five and a half behind the Red Sox, this four game series could go a long way toward either defending or losing their playoff shot. Here are the matchups, showing 2013 season stats.

RHP Chris Archer vs. RHP Garret Richards, 9:05 PM

Archer Richards
K% 17.3% 16.6%
BB% 7.8% 6.5%
GB% 46.8% 58.5%
ERA 2.81 4.16
FIP 4.06 3.42
xFIP 4.23 3.48
SIERA 4.27 3.54

LHP Matt Moore vs. LHP Jason Vargas, 10:05 PM

Moore Vargas
K% 22.6% 16.3%
BB% 11.0% 7.7%
GB% 38.7% 42.5%
ERA 3.41 3.54
FIP 3.69 405
xFIP 4.19 4.36
SIERA 4.16 4.46

TBD vs. RHP Jered Weaver, 10:05 PM

Weaver
K% 19.41%
BB% 6.1%
GB% 3.2%
ERA 3.30
FIP 3.78
xFIP 4.18
SIERA 4.08

LHP David Price vs. RHP Jerome Williams

Price Williams
K% 20.2% 14.8%
BB% 3.7% 7.8%
GB% 44.9% 46.6%
ERA 3.30 4.68
FIP 3.28 4.69
xFIP 3.35 4.28
SIERA 3.47 4.45

The Rays have the advantage in three out of these four matchups (TBD is unlikely to outpitch Weaver).

The Offense

The Angels are a strong offensive team, with a 108 wRC+ (seventh in MLB) in the best of times. These are not the best of times in LA of Anaheim, though. They're pretty banged up and depleted, with both Ray killer Howie Kendrick and Albert Pujols out. Here are the hitters who have accumulated at least 100 plate appearances:

Name AVG OBP SLG HR BABIP wRC+
Mike Trout 0.334 0.431 0.577 23 0.382 180
Kole Calhoun 0.265 0.351 0.469 5 0.284 130
Howie Kendrick* 0.301 0.341 0.437 11 0.344 116
Albert Pujols* 0.258 0.33 0.437 17 0.258 111
Hank Conger 0.256 0.315 0.436 7 0.303 109
Mark Trumbo 0.237 0.295 0.454 29 0.275 106
Chris Iannetta 0.212 0.355 0.338 7 0.275 103
Peter Bourjos 0.274 0.328 0.381 3 0.344 101
J.B. Shuck 0.296 0.332 0.377 2 0.326 99
Josh Hamilton 0.236 0.297 0.422 19 0.279 98
Alberto Callaspo* 0.252 0.324 0.347 5 0.254 90
Erick Aybar 0.268 0.303 0.361 4 0.288 85
Chris Nelson* 0.22 0.277 0.349 3 0.296 75
Brendan Harris* 0.206 0.252 0.355 4 0.24 68

* Not with team.

Pujols has been shut down for the season with a foot injury, Kendrick is out with a sore knee, Nelson strained his hamstring, Callaspo is in Oakland, and Harris is in Texas.

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