The Angels shut out the Brewers in Friday's Interleague series opener, and they'll have a pitcher familiar with hitting on the mound for Saturday's game. Veteran Jerome Williams will be matched against Milwaukee's Marco Estrada, and Williams said that getting a chance to hit makes him feel more at home.
"It never really bothered me, because I was brought up in the National League and I knew how to hit," said Williams, drafted and developed by the San Francisco Giants. "I had to learn how to hit. So from Double-A on, I was trying to be a part of the game, putting down bunts and stuff, trying to go deep in the game. If you don't know to handle a bat in the National League, you're not going to get deep in the game. It's good to go out there and try to be perfect that so you can be out there for a long time."
The Angels have won six of their last seven games, and Williams returns to the rotation after a three-inning relief stint on Wednesday. The right-hander pitched into the seventh inning of his last start, but he hasn't earned a victory since June 12 and he has an 5.38 ERA in 19 starts.
Estrada will make his fifth start since returning from a hamstring injury that cost him more than two months of the year. Estrada has given up 17 home runs in 16 starts, and he has just 21 walks all season.
The Angels took control of the series opener with a four-run seventh inning, and ace Jered Weaver gave Los Angeles six shutout innings, extending Angels pitchers' scoreless streak to 22 innings. The Angels are seeking their third consecutive series win, but they're 30-35 on the road. Sixteen of their remaining 29 games are away from home.
The Brewers are 30-36 at home this season, and they'll play host to the playoff-contending Pirates after the Angels leave town. Milwaukee is 3-3 in its last six games and 5-6 over the last 11 games.
Angels: Hamilton sits with sore shoulder
Josh Hamilton sat Friday nursing a sore shoulder. He spent the Angels' last series against the Rays filling the designated hitter role, because it especially bothers him when he's throwing.
Hamilton reported that the shoulder was "still sore" prior to Friday's game. He was not available to pinch-hit during the contest, but manager Mike Scioscia hopes to slot him into Saturday's lineup.
Brewers: Henderson closing it down
Jim Henderson has converted 12 straight save opportunities for the Brewers, breaking a team record set by Trevor Hoffman in the 2009 season. Henderson has given up three home runs in 50 games, and he's struck out 57 batters while allowing just 33 hits and 21 walks.
With John Axford traded to the Cardinals for a player to be named later on Friday, the closer role is Henderson's to lose.
"Henderson has done a great job for us," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said. "Whether he continues to be that closer depends on what he does. What he's doing right now, he's going to continue to close. We had [Francisco Rodriguez] in here earlier, and when Henderson got hurt, Frankie kind of jumped into that spot. But Henderson, I put him right back in, and he's done really well."
• In his four starts since returning from the DL, Estrada is 2-0 with a 1.88 ERA and a .169 opponents' batting average.
• The Angels have scored 28 runs and allowed 11 over their last seven games.
Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.