The A's will send Sonny Gray to the mound on Sunday as they go for a four-game sweep against the Angels at Angel Stadium. Left-hander Hector Santiago will start for the Halos.
Gray is 0-1 with a 3.28 ERA in four starts since returning from the disabled list on May 21 (strained right trapezius). A's manager Bob Melvin said he's seen improvement from Gray in each outing since coming back from injury.
"Every start that he's had since he's come back, less really one inning, has been really good," Melvin said. "His stuff has been there, the movement on his fastball, the breaking stuff, everything is really crisp and he's throwing the ball well. Everybody goes through a period of struggles at some point in time in their career, but since he's been back he's been much more like the old Sonny Gray that we're used to seeing."
Santiago is 4-4 with a 4.99 ERA in 15 starts this season. The Angels have alternated wins and losses in Santiago's four previous starts this month. He took a no-decision against the Astros his last time out, despite pitching 6 1/3 innings of one-run ball in a game the Angels went on to lose.
"It's been hot and cold from him," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "He's thrown some games where you just go, 'Wow' and everything is working for him. The velocity is there and the command. But then there's some games where he really just doesn't have the stuff you saw the start before."
Things to know about this game
• Gray is 2-0 with a 1.52 ERA in four career appearances at Angel Stadium.
• Santiago is 3-3 with a 3.34 ERA lifetime against the Angels in 12 appearances (10 starts).
• A's third baseman Danny Valencia is 7-for-17 (.412) lifetime against Santiago with two doubles, two RBIs and two walks.