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Red-hot Angels turn to Weaver against Rangers

(Sports Network) - The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim will try for their ninth win in their last 10 games on Saturday afternoon, as their four-game series against the Texas Rangers continues at Globe Life Park in Arlington.

Jered Weaver, who's 9-6 with a 3.50 ERA, is set to make the start for the Angels.

Weaver had to leave his latest start on July 7 due to back stiffness after tossing just two innings, but he and the Angels' training staff do not suspect the problem to be serious.

"It feels about 80 percent better than when I came out," Weaver said after his latest start. "We'll stay on top of it, and hopefully it won't linger too long."

Weaver dominated Texas back on June 21, pitching eight innings of one-run ball, but he had to settle for a no-decision.

The Rangers will answer with Miles Mikolas, who's struggled mightily since being called up from Triple-A Round Rock earlier this month at 0-1 with a 12.46 ERA.

Mikolas was roughed up in a July 7 loss to Houston, scattering 12 hits and nine earned runs over 3 1/3 innings in just his second-career start.

The Angels' hot streak continued on Friday night with a 3-0 victory behind an excellent pitching performance by Garrett Richards.

Richards (11-2) extended his personal winning streak to seven in a row after pitching seven scoreless innings, allowing just five hits and two walks while striking out eight. The All-Star snub lowered his ERA to 2.55 in the process.

"It's some motivation for the whole year," Richards said of his snub. "I'll probably end up carrying that with me the whole year."

"He's an All-Star in our mind, no doubt about it," Angels manager Mike Scioscia added. "He's having an incredible first half, and hopefully he'll pick it right up after the break."

Joe Smith pitched a perfect ninth for his 13th save.

Mike Trout put Los Angeles on the board in the fourth inning with a solo home run, his 22nd of the year. Erick Aybar and David Freese each added an RBI in the seventh to pad the lead.

Nick Tepesch (3-5) only allowed six hits and walked none over six innings of work for the Rangers but gave up three runs in the loss.

Alex Rios finished 2-for-4 and was the only Texas player with multiple hits. He also stole his 15th base of the season.

The Angels are 6-2 versus the Rangers this season.

07/12 10:44:24 ET