Patrick Sandoval Continued Believing He Would Settle In During Angels Loss To Guardians
MLB: Cleveland Guardians at Los Angeles Angels
Jessica Alcheh-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Angels were never close in a blowout loss against the Cleveland Guardians on Friday night. The Guardians got on the board early and often, shelling Patrick Sandoval for eight earned runs on six hits and four walks over 3.2 innings. Even more damaging for Sandoval was that he retired the first four batters of the night.

Sandvoal has made great strides in his last four starts, holding a 2.63 ERA and much-improved 1.125 WHIP in 24 innings. So it looked that the new normal was going to continue in the early phases of Friday’s start. Then, it fell apart quickly for the Angels Opening Day starter.

He retired only three of the next 10 batters he faced, giving up two runs in the second and another two in the third. Ron Washington, believing that Sandoval has shown the ability to settle in after rough innings, gave him a shot in the fourth frame. He proceeded to give up another four runs, including back-to-back homers from Jose Ramirez and Josh Naylor.

The final result was one of Sandoval’s ugliest starts of the year. But even still, Sandoval felt after every batter that he was going to settle in and had his stuff working, according to Jeff Fletcher of The O.C. Register:

“I felt really good,” Sandoval said. “It was just kind of inconsistent through the zone. I felt the same. It’s like any second I’m just gonna settle in. I still felt good at times and then it would just completely be gone.”

While the stats say otherwise, Washington saw the same thing as Sandoval, which was a pitcher capable of settling in and having decent stuff.

“I think it was my heart, because I’ve seen him have that type of start and settle in. I was hoping he’d settle in and give us some innings. It just didn’t work out. I left him out there too long.”

It’s a big step back for Sandoval after four consecutive solid starts. The Angels starter continues to struggle to find any consistency between starts, and at this rate it’s become a pattern, not just bad luck. How Sandoval bounces back will be very telling for the remainder of the 2024 season.

Zach Neto had minor inflammation in elbow

After being removed from Wednesday’s game with an elbow issue, Zach Neto feared the worst. And while an MRI ultimately did reveal some inflammation, the Angels do not believe there is any long-term issue, and Neto was even considered available to pinch-hit on Friday night.

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