Saturday, August 4, 2012
Matchup: Scott Feldman vs. Will Smith
By Richard Durrett
The second game of this three-game set between the Texas Rangers and Kansas City Royals features RHP Scott Feldman against LHP Will Smith. The game starts at 5:10 p.m. on ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM and FSSW. A look at the matchup:
Feldman (5-6, 4.76 ERA): The 29-year-old is making his 13th start of the season as the No. 1 fill-in for injured starters. But he's in there as a member of the rotation after a solid July that earned him Rangers player of the month honors. ... He has won five straight decisions and hopes to become the first big league pitcher to have a six-game winning streak after opening the season with a six-game losing streak since Doyle Alexander in 1983 (he staretd 0-8 and won his next seven starts). ... Feldman threw eight shutout innings on seven hits in a win over the White Sox on Sunday, with five strikeouts and no walks on 88 pitches. ... Since STATS Inc. began tracking pitch counts in 1988, the only other Ranger with at least eight shutout innings on 88 pitches or less was Kevin Brown in a four-hit shutout on June 20, 1990. ... He is 2-2 with a 3.25 ERA in 12 games (five starts) in his career against the Royals. ... He took the loss on May 14 vs. KC, going 4 2/3 innings and allowing two runs (both unearned) on three hits (It was just his second start and the club didn't want to push things, taking him out after 81 pitches).
Smith (2-3, 5.94 ERA): The 23-year-old made his big league debut in May and has made six starts for the Royals this season. ... Smith's last two starts have been his best. He's allowed four runs on nine hits in 13 innings in starts in July against the Angels and Mariners -- both on the road. ... After issuing 11 walks in his first five starts, he didn't have a free pass in his last outing, a quality start vs. the Mariners. ... This will be his first start against the Rangers.
Hitters: The Rangers have never faced Smith. ... Alex Gordon (4-for-8) and Mitch Maier (4-for-5) have hit Feldman well, but the Rangers starter has limited Billy Butler to 4-for-18 and Chris Getz to 1-for-8.
Sun. at KC: LHP Derek Holland (7-6, 4.96) vs. RHP Luke Hochevar (7-9, 5.22), 1:10 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FSSW