1. West woes. The Orioles have had their struggles on the West Coast in recent years, and are hoping two straight losses at the Angels don't mark the beginning of a longer skid. They head to Oakland to face the cellar-dwelling Athletics, who have lost four of six since a brief stretch of improved play. The Orioles open the four-game series 2½ games out of the second wild-card spot, and have a real opportunity to gain ground in the coming days. Two teams ahead of them — the Angels and Mariners — are also engaged in a four-game series.