The Los Angeles Angels will host the San Francisco Giants on Monday night in Anaheim, Calif., the first of four games the teams will play against each other this week, two in each team’s ballpark.
Giants second baseman Donovan Solano has been as consistent as anybody in the batter’s box all season. His 17-game hitting streak — which ended with Sunday’s 0-for-5 performance against the Oakland A’s — is the longest in the majors this season.
More than one-third of the way through this season’s shortened schedule, Solano is hitting .403.
“With all the advanced metrics and tools at our disposal, there’s still a lot of value in hitters who just have a knack for finding the outfield grass,” Giants president Farhan Zaidi told The Athletic. “He’s obviously done a great job of that over his time with the Giants.”
While with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Zaidi signed Solano as a free agent in 2018. Though Solano played all of 2018 in the minor leagues, Zaidi signed Solano as a free agent again in 2019, bringing him to San Francisco.
Solano paid Zaidi back by hitting .330/.360/.456 in 81 games for the Giants last year.
Solano does not have a lot of power — he has just one homer this season — but he has nine doubles, which rank tied for third in the majors. He’s been even better against right-handers this season, batting .429 (21 for 49).
Right-hander Griffin Canning (0-3, 4.42 ERA) will start for Los Angeles. Canning, who has never faced the Giants, is still looking for his first win of the season. He is coming off a loss to the Oakland A’s in which he gave up four runs on six hits in four innings, his worst start of the season.
The A’s hit the ball so hard in that game — five of their six hits off Canning went for extra bases, including three home runs — that Angels manager Joe Maddon and pitching coach Mickey Callaway wondered if Canning was tipping his pitches.
“They weren’t chasing stuff, which they normally do,” Maddon said. “I just want to look at it, I want to see what’s going on. Mickey and I talked about it. They just weren’t chasing, and they were early count hitting. I don’t know if that was their game plan and they were fortuitous, but that’s one of the things you have to look at.”
Canning acknowledged that it was a possibility.
“If they’re laying off pitches I feel like I normally get swings at, then maybe they are seeing something,” he said. “… or just doing a good job executing the game plan. But I feel like I’m usually on the better side of that.”
The Giants will counter with left-hander Tyler Anderson (0-1, 3.63 ERA), who gave up four runs over five innings his last time out against Houston. He faced the Angels just once in his career, making a 2018 start, when he gave up four runs and six hits over five innings.
–Field Level Media