Corey Kluber and Tyler Skaggs meet on Wednesday night in Anaheim, California. Kluber a guy who has become a full-fledged ace for the Indians, while Skaggs has been stuck in mediocracy. The Angels are hoping he takes that next step and becomes a pitcher who can become their ace. It hasn’t been the case thus far, and after five years in the majors, it’s about time he steps up and shoulders the load. Skaggs hasn’t had a year with a sub-4.00 ERA, his best coming in 2016 with a 4.17 ERA.
The most frustrating part of his game is that he can be good, he’s shown it in flashes. However, Skaggs has a tendency to give it right back in the next few starts. In any event, he and Ohtani are likely going to be the Angels’ best pitchers in 2018. The starting rotation in Anaheim is pretty bare other than those two. They do improve from a year ago by adding Ohtani, though. It may be enough to give them the extra jump they need to find the postseason.
The Angels absolutely dismantled the Indians last night behind a big opening inning. They erased an early 2-0 lead for the Indians by scoring 6 runs in the 1st inning. Garret Richards pitched well and Josh Tomlin took it on the chin, surrounding 8 earned runs to finish with an ERA of 24.00. Kluber will hope to wash away that abysmal start and get the Indians going in the right direction on Wednesday. With the win last night, the Angels enter with a record of 4-2, while the Indians fell back to 2-3. Head below for our free Indians vs. Angels pick.
Cleveland Indians vs. L.A. Angels
Corey Kluber (0-1, 2.25 ERA) vs. Tyler Skaggs (1-0, 0.00 ERA)
When the dust settled last night, the Angels dispatched the Indians by a score of 13-2. The highlight of last night was a bomb from Ohtani, his first as an Angel and it came in the season opener in Anaheim. The two-way phenom is going to be the most intriguing player of the 2018 season. Not one of, but I think the most intriguing player of the season. We haven’t seen a guy who can pitch and hit like he can. Kluber will look to tame Ohtani after an impressive debut in front of his hometown fans. Kluber looked solid in his opening start, allowing 2 runs and 6 hits across 8 innings of work against the Mariners. He also sported a 0.88 WHIP. Skaggs looked good in his first start of the year as well.
Skaggs came out on fire, with no runs allowed against the Athletics. He also surrendered just 3 hits and a 0.47 WHIP in the outing. That’s great and all, just about as good as you could get. But therein lies the frustration with Skaggs. He can be flawless like that and then go off the rails thereafter. It can be all or nothing with him. Conversely, it’s a little easier to get a read on Kluber. He is steady and consistent as they come. The last time Kluber was in Anaheim, he allowed just 3 hits and 2 runs in a 6-2 win for the Indians. Note that the Indians are still 9-1 in their last ten against the Angels despite the big loss yesterday. I suspect that the Indians come back hard behind Kluber on Wednesday and get back on track. The Angels suffer a bit of a hangover after an easy win in their home opener.