In a weekly segment, we'll take a look around the AL West — what's happened so far, and what's on tap in the coming days.
1. Texas Rangers (37-26) — After a really rough stretch, it seems the Rangers might be on their way out of a slump as they've now won three straight dating back to Sunday's win over the San Francisco Giants and have now won two straight series with a chance to sweep the Arizona Diamondbacks tonight. Despite the pitching injuries, the starting staff has been enormous, thanks in large part to Colby Lewis and Matt Harrison. The bats are starting to come to life too, and even when they're held at bay guys like Craig Gentry step up. Things are going well again, and the lowly Houston Astros come to town this weekend. It should get better. Could two straight sweeps be on the horizon? Next up: Today, 7:05 p.m., vs. Arizona Diamondbacks.
2. Los Angeles Angels (34-30) — The Rangers were so close to gaining another game on the Angels Wednesday night but Erick Aybar had to go hit a late home run. C.J. Wilson had another great start and the Angels are officially back to life thanks to Mike Trout and the resurgence of Albert Pujols and even Torii Hunter. The Angels are 16-5 since Jered Weaver hit the DL, so just wait until their ace gets back. Buckle up, Rangers fans, it looks we'll have a fun race on our hands for the rest of the season. Next up: Friday, 9:05 p.m., vs. Arizona Diamondbacks.
3. Oakland A's (28-35) — The A's are in a good way right now, for them, anyways. They took three of four from the Rangers last week and have won two straight over the Rockies with a chance to sweep today. But the A's did get some bad, yet good news when ace Brandon McCarthy was forced to have an MRI on his injury-prone shoulder. He wasn't feeling right but the MRI revealed no structural damage, which is good news. Still, that has to be a concern for the A's. Next up: Today, 2:10 p.m., at Colorado Rockies.
4. Seattle Mariners (27-37) — Things are getting just flat-out bad for the Mariners, who are the only team in the AL West that isn't on a winning streak right now. Instead, they've lost four straight games and are on the verge of being swept at home by the San Diego Padres, who could be the worst team in the entire league. Yet, somehow, the Mariners seem to have the Rangers' number this year. Some things just can't be explained. Next up: Today, 9:10 p.m., vs. San Diego Padres.