Angels News: Griffin Canning Handles Dodgers Lineup Well In Follow-Up To Bounce-Back 2023 Campaign
MLB: Spring Training-Los Angeles Angels at Los Angeles Dodgers
Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Angels trotted Griffin Canning onto the mound for the first of three exhibition Freeway Series battles against the L.A. Dodgers. Canning, who finally rounded into form last season after injuries derailed the early phase of his career, has been hoping to build on what he did in 2023 and become a go-to starter for the Angels in 2024.

And a start against the Dodgers to begin that journey is arguably the most difficult thing a pitcher can do. He faced a fully formed Dodgers lineup that featured Mookie Betts, Shohei Ohtani, Freddie Freeman, Will Smith and more. And while Canning did give up four runs in the second inning, the overarching look at the day tells a much more impressive story.

Canning was removed from the game after allowing four baserunners and three runs in the second inning. His fourth earned run was given up by Hayden Seig. But then, as allowed in exhibition games, Canning returned for the third inning and proceeded to strike out six of his next 12 batters over three innings. In total, he allowed four earned runs on three hits and two walks with eight strikeouts in 4.2 innings of work.

The Angels starter discussed facing such a talented lineup and what the overall feeling of the day was, as his next start figures to be when the Angels are in Baltimore facing the Orioles for regular season play, according to Rhett Bollinger of

“I felt like I had most of my pitches working for me,” he added while discussing his outing against the Dodgers’ A-list lineup of everyday players. “But those guys are such good hitters, you’ve just got to keep mixing it up, keep them on their toes.”

“I feel great,” he said after his final appearance before the regular season begins. “Just staying disciplined with my routine, making sure I’m staying on top of everything I need to stay on top of.”

Based on how the schedule lines up, Canning’s next start could be anywhere from March 30 against the Orioles to April 1 against the Miami Marlins. That has yet to be determined. But either way, Canning won’t have to face a lineup quite as daunting as the Dodgers, even if both the Orioles and Marlins are considered serious contenders.

The Angels are putting their faith in Canning to have an incredible follow-up to his bounce-back 2023. And he has no plans to let them down.

Patrick Sandoval named Opening Day starter by Angels

The only starter that is set in stone for the team’s first road trip of the regular season is Patrick Sandoval, who takes the mound as the team’s first Opening Day starter post-Ohtani. Sandoval described it as an honor to be the Opening Day starter for the team he grew up supporting from Mission Viejo, California.

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