Every game is critical for the Angels this week as the front office decides whether to trade Shohei Ohtani. A series loss to the Tigers would be bad news for a team already on the borderline of contention. Griffin Canning will be on the mound for the Angels on Tuesday, facing another prime trade candidate in Eduardo Rodriguez. Detroit is a slight home favorite at -136 on the moneyline.
Let’s make predictions for Tuesday’s game between the Tigers and Angels and take a look at why the Angels are a good value pick.
Angels vs. Tigers Prediction
Aside from one recent start, Canning really looks like he’s started to figure out how to generate swings-and-misses. That could play especially well against some of the Tigers’ high-strikeout hitters, including Riley Greene who has been red hot lately.
There’s natural concern about what seems to be a pitching disadvantage for the Angels, but if Canning can keep that up, he can match Eduardo Rodriguez. The Angels have an exactly equal OPS against right-handed and left-handed pitchers, so there’s no collective matchup disadvantage against Rodriguez. With the way Ohtani has been getting on base and Luis Rengifo now starting to hit well along with Mickey Moniak and Taylor Ward, there’s a lot to like about this confident Angels lineup.
In what looks like a toss-up matchup at worst, the Angels have much more value on the moneyline considering how they’ve been able to generate wins under pressure since the all-star break ended.
Angels vs. Tigers Prediction: Angels Moneyline (+116)
Angels vs. Tigers Odds
The Tigers enter Tuesday as home favorites at -136 on the moneyline. The over/under is 8.5 runs.
It’s not common to see the Tigers favored against teams outside of the AL Central, but Eduardo Rodriguez is having a very strong year and Detroit has shown some fight thanks to Riley Greene’s hot bat. Still, that puts some real value on the Angels.
Angels vs. Tigers Key Matchups
Here are the key matchups that could decide Angels vs. Tigers.
Griffin Canning vs. Tigers Swing-and-miss Hitters
Canning has underwhelming raw numbers this season, but he looked excellent in his last start vs. the Yankees with 12 strikeouts before unraveling when Phil Nevin left him in too long. Canning’s strikeout rate is up this season, hovering at 9.4 per nine innings, and he’s recorded seven or more strikeouts in five of his last eight starts.
The Tigers strikeout 8.86 times per game, a bit more than the average team. Riley Greene, Spencer Torkelson, and Javier Baez are among hitters with a strikeout rate north of 20%. Greene, who has otherwise been excellent of late, has a strikeout rate near 28%. If Canning has the same stuff he had against the Yankees, he could have a simple path to keeping the Tigers’ offense at bay.
Shohei Ohtani’s Support vs. Tigers Pitching
Opposing pitchers are realizing again that Ohtani is just too dangerous to mess around with, and it’s translated to 12 walks in eight games for the likely MVP.
Part of the equation is Ohtani’s patient approach, but another is that the hitters surrounding Ohtani in the Angels’ lineup aren’t inherently intimidating. More often than not, though, the approach has burned pitchers since the all-star break. Mickey Moniak has been one of baseball’s best contact hitters over the past 10 days, and Taylor Ward has started to hit a lot more like he did in 2022.
The rest of the lineup is a major work-in-progress, so the Angels need Moniak and Ward to continue to produce in order to take advantage of Ohtani’s frequent walks.
Angels vs. Tigers Starting Lineups
Angels Starting Lineup
SS Zech Neto R
DH Shohei Ohtani L
CF Mickey Moniak L
LF Taylor Ward L
3B Mike Moustakas R
C Matt Thaiss L
RF Hunter Renfroe R
1B Trey Cabbage L
2B Luis Rengifo S
Tigers Starting Lineup
3B Zach McKinstry L
CF Riley Greene L
1B Spencer Torkelson R
DH Kerry Carpenter L
RF Matt Vierling R
SS Javier Baez R
2B Nick Maton L
LF Akil Baddoo L
C Jake Rogers R