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. Oakland Athletics (44-28) — The A's won the last two of their three games against the Rangers, but in a holding pattern at the moment with a 6-4 record over their last 10 games. Oakland's offense is cruising at the moment, but they lost starting pitcher Drew Pomeranz to a broken hand after he was pulled from Monday's game. But in true A's fashion, they'll probably plug some young arm there and be just fine. They are the heavy favorites to win the division. Next up: Friday, 9:05 p.m., vs. Boston Red Sox.
2. Los Angeles Angels (38-32) — Currently five games back of Oakland, the Angels are being carried right now by Mike Trout, who has torched opposing hitters over the last five games to the tune of a .500 average, four homers and nine RBIs. After a makeup game Thursday, they'll host the Rangers for a key three-game set. Next up: Today, 11:05 a.m., at Cleveland Indians.
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3. Seattle Mariners (37-35) — Currently two games up on the Rangers for third place, the Mariners aren't playing very good baseball at the moment after dropping a home series to Texas and falling 2-1 to the Padres on Wednesday. Next up: Today, 5:40 p.m., at San Diego Padres.
4. Texas Rangers (35-37) — The Rangers took two of three from the Mariners, then dropped two of three to Oakland. The Rangers really need to win this upcoming three-game set in Anaheim to give themselves a chance from here on out. Getting swept would be devastating but the Rangers have a pretty solid recent history against the Angels. Next up: Friday, 9:05 p.m., at Los Angeles Angels.
5. Houston Astros (32-41) — The Astros are reminding us that they're still, indeed, the Astros as they've dropped three straight games after going through a stretch of being one of baseball's hottest teams. They're also baseball's youngest team full of exciting prospects, but their year won't be this year. Next up: Today, 6:10 p.m., at Tampa Bay Rays.