Series Preview: Angels Begin Three-Game Set With Royals
Taylor Ward, MJ Melendez
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Angels begin a three-game series with the Kansas City Royals after avoiding a sweep to the Atlanta Braves on Sunday.

Angels interim manager Phil Nevin was happy with the way his club played in their last game, so they look to continue building on that.

Both the Angels and Royals playoff hopes are nearly extinct at this point. The Angels enter the series with a record of 40-55, 10.5 games out of a Wild Card spot, while the Royals are one of the few teams worse than L.A. with a record of 38-57, 12.5 games out.

Mike Trout is eligible to return from the 10-day injured list on Monday, but it appears he will need more time off.

Game 1: Monday, July 25, 5:10 p.m. PT

The Angels open the series with Noah Syndergaard on Monday and he will be looking to pitch deeper into the game than his previous two times out. In his last outing, the right-hander lasted just four innings while giving up three runs, which followed an outing of going five innings and giving up two runs.

Overall this season, Syndergaard has pitched to a 4.00 ERA in 74.1 innings while striking out 58 with a 1.20 WHIP.

The Royals counter with former Angels pitcher Zack Greinke, who made his return to Kansas City this past offseason after beginning his career there.

The 38-year-old has posted a 4.64 ERA in 77.2 innings with 42 strikeouts and a 1.33 WHIP this season. Greinke has not pitched past the fifth inning in any of his previous three outings and he has not pitched past the sixth inning in any game this season.

Game 1: Tuesday, July 26, 5:10 p.m. PT

In the middle game of the series, José Suarez is scheduled to start for the Angels. The southpaw was lit up for six runs in 3.2 innings his last time out and he has only turned in a quality start one time this season, which came in the end of June.

Overall, he owns a 5.60 ERA in 45 innings across 11 starts with 45 strikeouts and a 1.58 WHIP.

The Royals have yet to name a starter.

Game 1: Wednesday, July 27, 11:10 a.m. PT

The Angels have yet to announce a starting pitcher for the series finale, but the Royals will send Brad Keller to the mound.

A common theme of this series is both teams have a lot of starting pitchers who have struggled to prevent runs or pitch deep into games, and Keller is no exception. In his last outing, he went four innings and gave up four runs.

However, in July the right-hander has pitched to a 3.57 ERA while limiting hitters to a .205 average. Keller owns a 4.16 ERA across 101.2 innings with 68 strikeouts and a 1.31 WHIP in 18 starts this year.

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