|TEXAS ( LINDBLOM )|
BALTIMORE ( CHEN )
|913||TEXAS||+130||Ov 9.5,+105||+125||Ov 9.5,+105|
|914||BALTIMORE||-140||Un 9.5,-125||-135||Un 9.5,-125|
|vs Left-handed Starters||18-11||+2.6||13-16||4.9||0.280||0.347||4.2||0.244||0.302|
|Past 7 Games||5-2||+0.5||5-2||6.1||0.291||0.359||5.0||0.271||0.326|
|vs Right-handed Starters||35-28||+7.4||32-29||4.9||0.269||0.316||4.7||0.262||0.327|
|Past 7 Games||2-5||-3.3||2-4||3.3||0.207||0.249||4.3||0.280||0.343|
|6/26/2013||GRIMM(R)||@ NY YANKEES||PETTITTE(L)||8-5||W||120||9 un||O||13||8||0||10||5||2|
|6/27/2013||HOLLAND(L)||@ NY YANKEES||HUGHES(R)||2-0||W||-125||8.5 ev||U||6||4||0||2||2||0|
|7/8/2013||HOLLAND(L)||@ BALTIMORE||FELDMAN(R)||8-5||W||-105||8.5 ov||O||12||4||1||10||10||0|
|7/9/2013||PEREZ(L)||@ BALTIMORE||BRITTON(L)||8-4||W||110||9.5 ev||O||14||6||3||6||5||0|
|7/10/2013||LINDBLOM(R)||@ BALTIMORE||CHEN(L)|| |
|7/11/2013||DARVISH(R)||@ BALTIMORE||GONZALEZ(R)|| |
|7/12/2013||GRIMM(R)||@ DETROIT||FISTER(R)|| |
|7/13/2013||HOLLAND(L)||@ DETROIT||SCHERZER(R)|| |
|7/14/2013||PEREZ(L)||@ DETROIT||VERLANDER(R)|| |
|6/28/2013||MCFARLAND(L)||NY YANKEES||SABATHIA(L)||4-3||W||-115||8.5 ev||U||5||2||0||11||9||1|
|6/29/2013||BRITTON(L)||NY YANKEES||PHELPS(R)||11-3||W||-135||9 un||O||15||5||1||11||10||0|
|6/30/2013||TILLMAN(R)||NY YANKEES||KURODA(R)||4-2||W||-130||8.5 un||U||8||4||0||6||8||0|
|7/2/2013||HAMMEL(R)||@ CHI WHITE SOX||DANKS(L)||2-5||L||-120||8.5 un||U||8||7||0||10||7||0|
|7/3/2013||FELDMAN(R)||@ CHI WHITE SOX||SANTIAGO(L)||4-2||W||-125||8.5 un||U||9||8||0||9||7||0|
|7/4/2013||BRITTON(L)||@ CHI WHITE SOX||QUINTANA(L)||2-3||L||-105||9 ov||U||3||3||1||7||4||1|
|7/5/2013||GONZALEZ(R)||@ NY YANKEES||NOVA(R)||2-3||L||-110||9 un||U||3||2||2||7||13||0|
|7/6/2013||TILLMAN(R)||@ NY YANKEES||PETTITTE(L)||4-5||L||110||9 ov||P||11||5||0||10||8||1|
|7/7/2013||HAMMEL(R)||@ NY YANKEES||KURODA(R)||2-1||W||110||9 un||U||6||6||0||6||7||0|
|TEXAS: HITTING: 2B IAN KINSLER will lead off again. A few less at-'em balls and he's an MVP candidate. SS ELVIS ANDRUS is coming along offensively, but his poor SB% could lead to fewer attempts. Injuries are the only thing that will keep OF JOSH HAMILTON out of the MVP discussion. He'll likely start declining at age 35, but DH MICHAEL YOUNG can't help but put up numbers batting cleanup in this lineup. 3B ADRIAN BELTRE was unstoppable in Arlington. Like Hamilton, he's an MVP candidate if healthy. Injuries are piling up for OF NELSON CRUZ, who still has monster power but doesn't run as much anymore. C MIKE NAPOLI is MLB's best offensive catcher and will play some 1B on 'off' days. Because their lineup is stacked, Texas can play defensive-minded/offensively limited 1B MITCH MORELAND. And because Ron Washington would prefer to play Hamilton in left, speedy CF CRAIG GENTRY looks to have the edge over DAVID MURPHY for the starting job in center. Cuban import LEONYS MARTIN will start the season in Triple-A, but JULIO BORBON could earn a significant OF role. |
STARTING PITCHING: COLBY LEWIS can overpower when he's on, but as a flyball pitcher in cozy Arlington he's going to have a handful of ugly days. The much-ballyhooed YU DARVISH brings a deep arsenal of pitches and a durable frame from Japan. He's probably the best Japanese arm to ever cross the Pacific. Lefty MATT HARRISON solidified his rotation spot. He has topped out as a respectable No. 3-type starter. DEREK HOLLAND has top-of-the-rotation upside. Consistency has been an issue, but hopefully another year and some big postseason moments helped to cure that. The big story is NEFTALI FELIZ moving to the rotation. He was considered a future ace in the minors, but the transition might not be easy. His K/BB ratio plummeted last year and his flyball tendencies could spell disaster in Arlington. Keep in mind the Rangers made a successful closer-to-ace switch with C.J. Wilson. Top prospect MARTIN PEREZ could be an option in the second half.
RELIEF PITCHING: Veteran JOE NATHAN was brought in and handed the closer's job. He struggled in his first year back from Tommy John surgery, but most pitchers who've had the procedure don't come all the way back until their second full season. If Nathan falters, MIKE ADAMS could be next in line. He had no trouble transitioning from pitcher-friendly San Diego in the National League to hitter-friendly Arlington and the A.L.'s superior bats. KOJI UEHARA would also be in the closer discussion if Nathan falters, but he was unhappy about being traded from Baltimore and faltered for the Rangers late last year. ALEXI OGANDO got a huge boost from his defense and his bullpen before a late-season collapse. He threw by far a career-high in innings; better stamina would allow him to take the next step and possibly rejoin the rotation.
|BALTIMORE: HITTING: The leadoff spot is 2B BRIAN ROBERTS' if he can stay on the field. His recent injury history is very troubling, though his talent makes him a risk worth taking. 2B ROBERT ANDINO and 2B RYAN ADAMS would compete for time if Roberts is out. The O's best hitter last year was arguably SS J.J. HARDY. He was healthy for the first time in years and flexed his legit 30-HR power. If Roberts and Hardy stay healthy, OF NICK MARKAKIS will likely hit third and see an increase in RBI chances. OF ADAM JONES seems to have the highest ceiling of any Baltimore hitter. 3B MARK REYNOLDS will probably end up at 1B. His horrendous average cancels out some of his 40-HR potential. OF NOLAN REIMOLD revived his MLB career with an impressive end of the season. He's got a shot to start in left. 1B CHRIS DAVIS is a candidate to start at first, third or DH as sort of a Junior Mark Reynolds. C MATT WIETERS is already one of the best two-way backstops in baseball at age 25. |
STARTING PITCHING: WEI-YIN CHEN pitched well enough in Japan (2.48 ERA, 1.06 WHIP in past four seasons) to become the de-facto ace of this horrible pitching staff. JAKE ARRIETA is a mediocre talent, but is good enough to secure a spot as a Baltimore starter. JASON HAMMEL hopes the switch from Coors Field will help lower his career ERA of 4.99. The highest-risk, highest-potential O's pitcher may be BRIAN MATUSZ. His 2011 line is frightening (10.69 ERA, 2.11 WHIP), but he has the raw skills and pitch repertoire to turn it around. TOMMY HUNTER came over from Texas midseason and should round out the rotation.
RELIEF PITCHING: There was talk of JIM JOHNSON being converted into a starter, but he'll open the season as the team's closer. Johnson established himself as the O's best option to close after going 7-for-7 in that role last September. KEVIN GREGG would step in as the ninth-inning man if Johnson falters. He was unstable in that role last year. Gregg is a trade candidate this midseason, in which case he'd probably end up a set-up man elsewhere. Flame-throwing MATT LINDSTROM is a darkhorse for saves. He saved 23 games for Houston in 2010 before being used as a set-up man in Colorado last year. TSUYOSHI WADA brings his finesse game from Japan. He's a heady hurler who hides the ball well, but he's in for a rude awakening in the A.L. East. BRAD BERGESEN and CHRIS JAKUBAUSKAS are long relievers who may get bumped into the rotation if the young Baltimore SPs struggle again.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER AL PREVIEW (TEXAS-BALTIMORE) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Rangers-Orioles Preview* =========================
By JORDAN GARRETSON STATS Writer
Texas (52-37) at Baltimore (49-41), 7:05 p.m. EDT
Baltimore's Wei-Yin Chen is ready to take the mound for the first time in nearly two months after being sidelined with an injury.
Unfortunately, he'll have to deal with Adrian Beltre, who is in the midst of a hitting tear.
Beltre looks to stay locked in and lead the Texas Rangers to a third straight victory over the Orioles on Wednesday night at Camden Yards.
The Texas third baseman continued his torrid stretch in Tuesday's 8-4 win as the Rangers (53-37) tied the franchise's second-best 90-game record with a 14th victory in 19 contests. Beltre was 4 for 4 with two home runs and had a season-high five RBIs. He has six homers over his last six games, improving his 2013 total to 20.
Texas is batting .267 as a team with 56 runs during Beltre's 11-game hitting streak, during which he owns a 1.509 OPS.
"He's been hot and cold and he's picked it up again," manager Ron Washington said. "He picked it up at the right time. When Adrian is getting it done it usually relaxes everybody else. That is what the big guy does in the middle of the lineup."
After losing six of eight, the Orioles (49-42) will activate Chen (3-3, 3.04 ERA) from the disabled list for his first start since May 12 against the Twins, which he left with a strained right oblique.
Chen threw seven shutout innings in a rehab outing for Double-A Bowie on Thursday.
The Rangers, meanwhile, will turn to right-hander Josh Lindblom (1-2, 4.50) in place of Nick Tepesch, who was placed on the DL on Sunday with right elbow inflammation.
Lindblom has gone 0-2 with a 5.40 ERA in four starts, the most recent a 4-3 win over Oakland on June 20. He's tossed 4 1-3 scoreless innings over three relief appearances since, allowing one hit and striking out six.
"He has been competitive," Washington told the team's official website. "The main thing is he has been executing pitches. He's going to give up runs, but he has been able to execute. He does his homework and he's prepared when he goes out there. We feel confident with him starting."
Lindblom has never faced Baltimore, which would love to see Chris Davis snap out of a funk. He's 1 for 21 with 12 strikeouts over his last six games, the lone hit a home run against the New York Yankees on Saturday.
Fellow All-Star J.J. Hardy entered the series 1 for his last 22 but has gone 3 for 8 in the first two games and drove in a pair of runs Tuesday.
Chen won his lone start versus Texas, allowing two runs over 7 2-3 innings in a 6-5 final on May 10, 2012.
He's the fifth straight left-hander to start against the Rangers. On Tuesday, they tagged Zach Britton for five runs and eight hits, including both of Beltre's homers.
Beltre is 8 for 14 with three home runs off lefties during his hitting streak, but 0 for 3 against Chen.
|Last Updated: 9/17/2014 6:35:18 AM EST|