video thumbnail

LAA@NYY: Wilson has a strong outing against the Yanks

Two Southern California natives will make their first home starts in more ways than one when the A's and Angels wrap up their four-game series on Thursday. Both the Angels' C.J. Wilson and the A's Tom Milone circled this date on their respective calendars as both receive the opportunity to pitch in front of a hometown crowd.

Wilson, who grew up in Orange County, highlighted upon signing with the Angels last winter his interest in returning home. He finally gets that opportunity on Thursday when he makes his first start at home as a Halo.

"Getting a start here is kind of what I've been looking forward to all offseason, so it'll be nice," said Wilson, who looks to help the Angels grab a series split with Oakland.

Once the tickets and accommodations were straightened out for his guests, Wilson turned his attention to his start as he seeks a third consecutive strong outing. Wilson (2-0, 1.38 ERA) has been everything the Angels hoped for so far this season. The southpaw has allowed one earned run in each of his two starts, going seven and six frames, respectively. Yet, despite his early success, Wilson is still hungry for improvement.

"There's certain things about each one of them that I'm not satisfied with," he said. "But ultimately I think I'm just feeling out what I have to do and where I can try to get a little bit more efficient and make less mistakes, and that's really what it's all about as a pitcher, trying to get through your innings as quickly as possible, without making mistakes."

Milone may not garner as much attention as Wilson, but the University of Southern California product admitted his excitement in making his first career start in Anaheim and against the Angels.

Milone (1-1, 2.57 ERA) acknowledged that he will have 50 to 60 friends and family members in attendance, but they have all seemingly given him the same message.

"Strike out Albert [Pujols]," Milone said.

Athletics: Reddick's red-hot week
• Josh Reddick endured a slowdown from April 9-15, recording just two hits in 19 at-bats with one run scored. However, the right fielder has picked up his pace over the past few days, recording multi-hit games in each of his last three starts, tallying seven hits in all with three doubles.

Any outburst is a welcome sight for an A's team that has struggled in pivotal situations. Oakland is hitting .201 as a team and has scored 39 this season.

• The A's are 5-0 this season when scoring first and 5-0 when leading after the eighth inning.

Angels: Trumbo should return soon
• Mark Trumbo has been held out of the lineup each of the last three games while battling illness. However, the third baseman figures to return shortly, especially with three left-handers slated to start against the Angels over the next four days. Trumbo is off to a .375 (6-for-16) start with two home runs, three RBIs and six runs scored. However, playing time could remain an issue in the future. Trumbo's results at third base have so far been mixed, yet there is little flexibility to slot him in the designated hitter's role as it is firmly assigned to Kendrys Morales.

• Pujols' homerless streak to begin the season reached 12 games on Wednesday, which is the longest of his career. Pujols' longest stretch without a home run is 107 at-bats (27 games) from April 24-May 22, 2011.

Worth noting
• Daric Barton hit the A's 10th team home run on Tuesday in the club's 12th game of the season. That is the most home runs hit by the A's through their first 12 games since they swatted 17 in their first dozen contests of the 2006 season.

• Wednesday marked the 40th anniversary of Nolan Ryan's first start for the Angels. Ryan tossed a four-hit shutout with 10 strikeouts against the Twins. The Hall of Fame right-hander went on to tally 40 shutouts with the Halos.

MLB.com Comments