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Los Angeles at Houston

Venue: Minute Maid Park

The Los Angeles Angels expect Josh Hamilton back just in time to help them try to avoid a season-high losing streak.

After missing the last 48 games with a thumb injury, the left fielder will return Tuesday night as the Angels open a three-game road series against the Houston Astros, who will debut highly touted prospect Jon Singleton.

Mike Trout could also return after missing two straight contests with a stiff back.

Hamilton was hitting .444 in eight games before injuring his left thumb on a head-first slide into first base April 8. The injury required surgery to repair a torn ulnar collateral ligament.

"Hopefully he can pick up right where he left off when he got hurt," first baseman Albert Pujols told the team's official website.

Four of the games he did play in were at Houston from April 4-7, and he went 9 for 16 with two home runs and five RBIs. Hamilton is batting .474 during an 11-game hitting streak at Minute Maid Park.

The Angels have gone 9-2 in those games while averaging 5.8 runs, and Astros starter Collin McHugh expects them to come in swinging.

"The guys at the top of the lineup are aggressive," McHugh told the team's website. "They're hunting fastballs, so it's really important to get offspeed (pitches) over for strikes."

Things didn't go quite as well over the weekend in Oakland as Los Angeles (30-26) suffered its second sweep of the season, surrendering 26 runs over three games.

"We're looking at the big picture," manager Mike Scioscia said. "We're a good team and our pitchers are a big part of that."

Scioscia's team will get the first look at Singleton, who agreed to a five-year contract Monday and has been promoted from Triple-A Oklahoma City.

The 22-year-old Singleton, who is rated by many as baseball's top first baseman of the future, was hitting .267 with 14 homers and 43 RBIs in 54 games for the RedHawks.

The Angels turn to C.J. Wilson as they look to avoid their first four-game losing streak this year. Wilson (6-4, 3.05 ERA) has gone 2-1 with a 1.57 ERA over his last three starts, yielding three runs in 7 2-3 innings of Wednesday's 3-1 loss in Seattle.

The left-hander is 5-2 with a 2.45 ERA in nine starts against Houston. He's given up one earned run in 15 innings over his past two starts at Minute Maid Park, allowing seven hits with 17 strikeouts.

Wilson has held third baseman Matt Dominguez to one hit in 15 at-bats while second baseman Jose Altuve is 3 for 16.

Los Angeles is 5-2 against Houston this year and 5-13 against the rest of the AL West.

The Astros (24-34) took the first two games of their weekend series with Baltimore to give them a seven-game winning streak but dropped the last two.

After starter Scott Feldman was pounded in Sunday's 9-4 defeat, Houston looks to McHugh (3-3, 2.80) for a stronger effort.

The right-hander produced such an outing in Tuesday's 3-0 win in Kansas City, allowing five hits with nine strikeouts in seven innings for his first victory in five starts over the last month.

He faced the Angels for the first time in his career May 21 and held them to two runs and four hits in seven innings of a 2-1 loss. Pujols hit a solo home run off McHugh.

He's surrendered 12 hits in his last 19 1-3 innings and has held opponents to a .195 average for the season, which would top the AL if he had enough innings to qualify.

Offensively, Houston had shown promise with five straight games of at least 11 hits prior to the Baltimore series. Against the Orioles, it struggled with a .189 average in four games.

Center fielder Dexter Fowler was 1 for 13 with six strikeouts.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
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Probable Starters

C. Wilson
L.A. Angels 2014 stats Houston
2-1 Wins-Losses 1-2
23.0 Innings Pitched 19.1
1.57 Earned Run Average 2.79
8 Walks 6
15 Strikeouts 23
0.96 WHIP 0.93

C. McHugh
Probable Pitchers
TeamStandingsWLPct.GBL 10Strk
Los Angeles1st AL West8053.602-7-3 W 3
Houston4th AL West5778.422245-5 W 1 Shop

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Los Angeles
R. BrasierForearm
S. BurnettElbow
G. GreenBack
B. MoranElbow
G. RichardsKnee
T. SkaggsElbow
J. ThatcherAnkle
M. AlbersShoulder
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J. CrainBiceps, calf
D. DownsOblique
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G. SpringerKnee, quadriceps
J. ZeidFoot
Series Game Log
Apr 11TEXTEX 1-0Frasor Peacock 
Apr 12TEXHOU 6-5Chapman Soria 
Apr 13TEXTEX 1-0Perez Oberholtzer 
May 12HOUTEX 4-0Lewis Peacock 
May 13HOUHOU 8-0Keuchel Harrison 
May 14HOUHOU 5-4Qualls Martinez 
Jul 7TEXHOU 12-7Cosart Mikolas 
Jul 8TEXHOU 8-3Peacock Irwin 
Jul 9TEXHOU 8-4Keuchel Darvish 
Aug 8HOUHOU 4-3Veras Cotts 
Aug 9HOUHOU 8-3Feldman Darvish 
Aug 10HOUTEX 6-2Martinez Keuchel 
Aug 28HOUHOU 4-2McHugh Mendez 
Aug 29HOU 8:10 PM EDT  
Aug 30HOU 7:10 PM EDT  
Aug 31HOU 2:10 PM EDT  
Sep 22TEX 8:05 PM EDT  
Sep 23TEX 8:05 PM EDT  
Sep 24TEX 8:05 PM EDT