Matchup: Yu Darvish vs. Chris Sale
ARLINGTON, Texas -- After an off day Thursday, the Texas Rangers resume their 10-game homestand with a three-game series against the Chicago White Sox. The first game of this series features RHP Yu Darvish vs. LHP Chris Sale. First pitch is at 7:05 p.m. on ESPN Dallas 130.3 FM/1540 AM/TXA21. A quick look at the matchup:
Darvish (11-6, 3.88): The 25-year-old and 2012 All-Star ranks among the AL leaders in strikeouts per nine innings (second, 10.24), strikeouts (fourth, 132), wins (tied fourth, 11) and opponent average (sixth, .226). ... He ranks third in the AL in walks (61) and hit batters (9). ... His 11 wins and 132 strikeouts lead all AL rookies, and he leads MLB with six double-digit strikeout games (fifth pitcher in MLB history to have that many in his first 18 career games). ... He was the fastest pitcher to reach 100 strikeouts in Rangers history, doing so in 15 games. ... Darvish has never faced the White Sox. ... He is 8-1 with a 2.51 ERA when facing a team for the first time.
Sale (11-3, 2.37): The 23-year-old has the second-best ERA in the AL (sixth-best in MLB) and is tied with Darvish for the fourth-most wins in the AL. ... He won his previous start against the Rangers this season, a 19-2 drubbing in which he pitched 7 1/3 innings and allowed five hits, one run and a walk while striking out four. ... He has the second-highest strikeout total on the White Sox staff (108) and has allowed the least home runs among Chicago starters (6). ... He won eight straight games before taking a loss in his last start against the Detroit Tigers. ... He has pitched well on the road, going 6-1 with a 3.03 ERA in 62 1/3 innings pitched in nine starts, but has has been even better at home at 5-2 with a 1.63 ERA in eight starts.
Hitters: Darvish has never faced a White Sox hitter. ... Sale has allowed a .211 career average to Rangers hitters. ... Adrian Beltre is 2-for-5 with a strikeout. ... Josh Hamilton is 1-for-3 with a walk. ... Mike Napoli is 1-for-3 with a strikeout. ... Elvis Andrus is 0-for-5 with a walk and a strikeout.
Sat. vs. CWS: LHP Matt Harrison (12-5, 3.02) vs. RHP Philip Humber (4-5, 6.25), 7:05 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FSSW.
Sun. vs. CWS: RHP Roy Oswalt (3-1, 5.22) vs. RHP Gavin Floyd (8-8, 4.46), 6:05 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FSSW.
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
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.
Play Podcast Nelson Cruz joins Galloway & Company to discuss the Rangers' series in Oakland, his ups and downs at the plate and if the PED talks before the season were a distraction.
Play Podcast Rangers manager Ron Washington joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett live from Oakland for his weekly visit.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway & Company to discuss his role with the Rangers. Ryan says that he has not been in contact with the Astros about a possible opening and he doesn't think that he would be interested anyway.
Play Podcast Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett for his weekly visit and wastes no time sounding off on MLB umpire Angel Hernandez.
Play Podcast Rangers first baseman Mitch Moreland joins GAC from Milwaukee to discuss what it was like facing former teammate Scott Feldman, Texas' upcoming series and more.
Play Podcast Ron Washington joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett live from Milwaukee for his weekly visit and discusses Nick Tepesch, the Rangers' rotation, interleague play and more.