Angels hope Hamilton returns in trip to Houston

Slugging outfielder Josh Hamilton is expected to return to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on Tuesday night, when they head to Minute Maid Park for the first of three games with the Houston Astros.

The Angels are a game shy of a season-high losing streak after dropping three straight in Oakland over the weekend, and have been without Hamilton since he tore a ligament in his left thumb while sliding into first base on April 8.


He played eight games before the injury and was hitting .444. Four of those games were in Houston and featured two home runs and five runs batted in. In his last 11 games at Houston, he has at least one hit in each and is batting a composite .474.

Los Angeles has won nine of those 11 games.

This time, they'll face a fellow slugger in Houston rookie Jon Singleton, who was promoted from Triple-A Oklahoma City after agreeing to a five-year contract.

In 54 games at Triple-A this spring, Singleton hit .267 with 14 home runs and 43 runs batted in.

The Angels face him with veteran lefty C.J. Wilson, who's won two of his last three decisions while compiling a 1.57 earned run average. He was a tough-luck loser in the most recent outing, however, after allowing three runs in 7 2/3 innings of a 3-1 loss at Seattle.

He's 5-2 in nine lifetime starts against the Astros and has surrendered one earned run in his last two starts in Houston.

Right-hander Collin McHugh gets the call for the Astros, coming off a 3-0 win at Kansas City in which he allowed five hits in seven innings and struck out nine.

He dropped a 2-1 decision to the Angels in their first meeting on May 21 after allowing just four hits and two runs in seven innings.

Batters are hitting just .195 against him for the season.

On Sunday in Oakland, Jed Lowrie had two hits, including a solo homer, and drove in two runs and the Athletics finished off a three-game sweep of the Angels with a 6-2 win.

The A's knocked around Angels ace Jered Weaver for 11 hits and six runs in six innings to complete their MLB-leading sixth series sweep of the season. Weaver (6-4) was 6-1 with a 2.01 ERA in his previous eight starts. The righty walked one and struck out two, throwing 51 of his 90 pitches for strikes in the loss.

In Houston, Manny Machado's grand slam highlighted a six-run top of the sixth inning and the Baltimore Orioles defeated the Astros, 9-4, in the finale of a four-game set.

Scott Feldman (3-3) was shelled for nine runs on 11 hits and a walk over 5 1/3 frames for the Astros, who have lost two straight on the heels of a seven-game winning streak.

"We had our opportunities and we had pitches to hit," Astros manager Bo Porter said. "You would love to win the series, but at the same time you want to play really good baseball."


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