The San Diego Padres stand as the worst injury-bitten team in Major League Baseball. Mark Kotsay becomes the latest player to be added to the injured list, as the Los Angeles Angels make the 90-minute drive further south in California to visit the Padres Saturday night.
Albert Pujols has rebounded from his early-season woes by opening a seven-game hitting streak and launching his first home runs of the season to the relief of Angels fans. The Padres send a number of prospects into the mix, having utilized nine starting pitchers so far in 2012.
Mark Trumbo and Mike Trout of the Angels boast the best batting averages and are a threat to power long shots at Petco this weekend. The Padres will need to strategically scout the Angels' weaknesses—something they failed to do on Friday when the Padres yielded seven runs to the Angels, while Angels' ace Jered Weaver proved dominant.
With more than 100 games remaining, both teams have an uncertain future. The Padres have one of the best farm systems and lowest payrolls in baseball. The Halos lie on the other end of the spectrum. Trades could be likely for both franchises to acquire key pieces necessary to propel them through the year.
The aforementioned Mike Trout has sparked his team as a leadoff man. During his short tenure, the Angels' winning percentage has been .588 when Trout leads off. Peter Bourjos watches from the bench, seeing his own speed left underutilized for the present time.
Dan Haren takes the mound Saturday night for the Angels, hoping to get the club closer to the .500 mark. San Diego's Eric Stults will make his first start after being waived by Chicago on Wednesday.