Week ahead: Arizona, Houston at home
|ESPNDallas.com's Richard Durrett talks all things Rangers with Ben and Skin. |
* Offense. The club went 4-6 on its latest 10-game road trip through Anaheim, Oakland and San Francisco and hit just .251 as a team in that stretch. They averaged just 3.1 runs per game, more than two fewer than their average. They scored two or fewer runs in six of the 10 games. The team hit into 12 ground-ball double plays and hit just six home runs.
Did the series in San Francisco get them going again? It's possible. Despite scoring just two runs in Saturday's game, the Rangers did win two of three from the Giants and hit .283 and averaged four runs per game. That's an improvement. They hit into just one ground-ball double play and had four homers in the three games. They also did a better job with clutch hits.
* Matt Harrison. He leads the club in wins with eight and has a 3.87 ERA. Harrison isn't flashy. You won't see him racking up a ton of fantasy baseball points. But he keeps his team in games and wins. And he's starting to have that ability to end slumps, which is critical on a contending team. Harrison pitches Wednesday against Arizona.
* Ian Kinsler. The leadoff hitter is the biggest sparkplug on offense and, like the rest of the bats, he struggled on the road trip. Kinsler hit .233 in the 10-game span. But he did have two multi-hit games in San Francisco, including a home run and four RBIs. Is it a sign that he's going to start hitting? Houston could be just what he needs. Kinsler has a career .343 average in 35 games vs. the Astros with nine homers and 19 RBIs.
* Adrian Beltre. The club's cleanup hitter was 8-for-41 (.195) on the road trip, but did finish with a four-game hitting streak (one hit in each of those games). He had no homers on the road and hasn't hit a long ball since May 27 vs. Toronto.
* Fielding. Texas had eight errors during the 4-6 road trip, uncharacteristically booting balls. The Rangers were much more crisp Sunday, but watch this week and see if they can find more consistent play on defense.
* Tickets. If you want to see the Astros, you better get your tickets fast. By last count, there wasn't much for the series, especially Saturday. There are good seats available for the Arizona series.
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
Play Podcast Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett for his weekly visit to discuss a hypothetical Jurickson Profar for Cliff Lee trade, how he would handle Profar's playing time with the Rangers and more.
Play Podcast Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus joins Galloway & Company to discuss having Scott Boras as his agent, his new contract and having Jurickson Profar in the lineup.
Play Podcast Rangers manager Ron Washington joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett for his weekly visit to discuss Yu Darvish's pitch count and how he spends time in the clubhouse during weather delays.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway & Company for his weekly visit to discuss the latest Rangers news.
Play Podcast Reid Ryan joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to discuss his new position with the Houston Astros and whether he could see his dad, Nolan, joining him there in the future.
Play Podcast ESPN MLB Insider Jayson Stark joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to discuss if the Rangers are the best team in baseball, what makes them so good and if he thinks the team will trade Jurickson Profar.
Play Podcast Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to discuss Ron Washington's decision to send Yu Darvish to the mound for the eighth inning Thursday night and how he would handle a situation like that if he were still a GM.
Play Podcast Randy Galloway, Matt Mosley and Glenn "Stretch" Smith discuss the latest Rangers news, including the Yu Darvish-Justin Verlander matchup.
- There are no games scheduled for today.