|BALTIMORE ( CHEN )|
TEXAS ( HOLLAND )
|969||BALTIMORE||+125||Ov 9.5,+105||+130||Ov 9,+100|
|970||TEXAS||-135||Un 9.5,-125||-140||Un 9,-120|
|vs Left-handed Starters||15-14||0||12-14||4.6||0.262||0.309||4.4||0.264||0.313|
|Past 7 Games||4-3||+0.2||5-2||5.1||0.243||0.296||4.9||0.296||0.345|
|vs Left-handed Starters||18-12||+1.5||13-17||4.7||0.276||0.343||4.2||0.245||0.306|
|Past 7 Games||3-4||-0.4||2-4||3.9||0.260||0.318||4.4||0.248||0.323|
|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|
|7/19/2013||CHEN(L)||@ TEXAS||HOLLAND(L)|| |
|7/20/2013||GONZALEZ(R)||@ TEXAS||PEREZ(L)|| |
|7/21/2013||TILLMAN(R)||@ TEXAS||WOLF(R)|| |
|7/22/2013||HAMMEL(R)||@ KANSAS CITY||DAVIS(R)|| |
|7/23/2013||FELDMAN(R)||@ KANSAS CITY||CHEN(L)|| |
|7/24/2013||CHEN(L)||@ KANSAS CITY||SANTANA(R)|| |
|7/25/2013|| ||@ KANSAS CITY|| || |
|7/26/2013|| ||BOSTON|| || |
|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)||1-6||L||135||9.5 un||U||4||5||0||10||10||0|
|7/11/2013||WOLF(R)||@ BALTIMORE||GONZALEZ(R)||1-3||L||135||9.5 un||U||7||6||0||6||2||1|
|7/12/2013||GRIMM(R)||@ DETROIT||FISTER(R)||2-7||L||170||9.5 un||U||10||10||0||11||6||1|
|7/13/2013||HOLLAND(L)||@ DETROIT||SCHERZER(R)||7-1||W||145||8 un||P||12||7||0||6||8||1|
|7/14/2013||PEREZ(L)||@ DETROIT||VERLANDER(R)||0-5||L||155||8.5 ov||U||2||5||1||7||6||0|
|7/22/2013||DARVISH(R)||NY YANKEES|| || |
|7/23/2013||OGANDO(R)||NY YANKEES|| || |
|7/24/2013||HOLLAND(L)||NY YANKEES||PETTITTE(L)|| |
|7/25/2013|| ||NY YANKEES|| || |
|7/26/2013|| ||@ CLEVELAND|| || |
|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.
|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.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER AL PREVIEW (BALTIMORE-TEXAS) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Orioles-Rangers Preview* =========================
By NICOLINO DIBENEDETTO STATS Writer
Baltimore (53-43) at Texas (54-41), 8:05 p.m. EDT
Chris Davis' season has already entered the record books.
Now, the Baltimore Orioles are hoping he can eventually lead them back to the postseason.
Davis looks to continue his staggering production Friday night as the Orioles visit Arlington for the first time since eliminating the Texas Rangers from the playoffs in October.
Davis has emerged as one of the most feared hitters in baseball, and his major league-leading 37 homers tied the AL record for the most before the All-Star break, set by Reggie Jackson in 1969.
Davis also has a career-high 93 RBIs, two fewer than Detroit's Miguel Cabrera for the most in baseball. He went 1 for 3 while batting behind Cabrera in the AL's 3-0 All-Star game win Tuesday after entering the break with homers in four straight games.
The first of that stretch was a solo shot in a 3-1 win over Texas on July 11, helping Baltimore (53-43) - currently 4 1/2 games behind East-leading Boston - earn a split of a four-game set at Camden Yards.
Davis, though, is eying more than personal glory after the Orioles were eliminated in the division series by New York last season. That, of course, came after their 5-1 victory at Texas in the wild-card round.
"It's a productive year," Davis told the team's official website. "Did we go to the World Series? Did we win the World Series? I think that's the ultimate goal. How far did the team go? A lot of guys had productive years last year, but we didn't finish where we wanted to finish."
Giving the ball to Wei-Yin Chen (4-3, 2.82 ERA) may help get this three-game series off to a strong start.
The left-hander has won both of his career starts against Texas behind a 1.23 ERA after allowing one run and three hits in seven innings July 10. That was also Chen's first outing after missing nearly two months with a strained right oblique.
"For the last year and a half, he was a consistent force for our rotation," catcher Matt Wieters said. "You know he's going to go out there and give you everything he has and compete."
The Rangers, losers of four of their last five games, may be hoping the break offered them a chance to get healthy. They have 10 players on the disabled list, including seven pitchers - six starters.
"It's been a grind in the first half with the challenges we've been put up against," manager Ron Washington told the team's official website. "But we've done a good job dealing with it, and going through it can't help but make you stronger."
Washington will give the ball to Derek Holland (8-4, 3.08), who is doing his part to pick up the slack on the mound. The left-hander is 3-0 with a 1.88 ERA and 31 strikeouts in 28 2-3 innings over his last four starts.
"I just have to start the second half strong," Holland said. "I want to continue what I've been doing."
Holland has won four straight starts versus the Orioles with a 2.10 ERA. He earned an 8-5 victory at Baltimore on July 8, when he allowed five runs - three earned - in 6 2-3 innings, ringing up Davis for three of his seven strikeouts.
Nelson Cruz, one of three Rangers All-Stars on Tuesday, is a career .358 hitter against the Orioles - his highest average against any AL opponent.
He's been even better against them at Rangers Ballpark, hitting .392 with 22 RBIs in 19 games, including two hits in last year's playoff meeting.
|Last Updated: 9/2/2014 6:21:09 AM EST|