Sunday, May 5, 2013
Buzz: Darvish home starts are an event
By Todd Wills
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Catcher A.J. Pierzynski labeled being behind the plate for a Yu Darvish home start an event before Sunday's game against Boston.
"They're events," Pierzynski said. "But I like to be back there for all of our guys."
Pierzynski is in the starting lineup for Sunday's day game after starting Saturday's night game. It's happened a handful of times this season when Pierzynski has started back-to-back games in that situation. It's a change from before, as manager Ron Washington has typically started his backup.
"Pierzynski is stubborn," Washington said. "He wanted to play, so he's playing."
Pierzynski is old school and wants to be in the lineup every day. Plus, he's trying to get into a groove at the plate after basically missing two games because of a sore oblique earlier this week against the Chicago White Sox.
He's batting .232 for his past 18 games to drop his season average from .409 to .275. He has hit safely in 10 of his past 11 games.
Washington said he'll get backup catcher Geovany Soto in some games on the upcoming four-city, nine-game road trip..
Other Rangers notes for Sunday:
Washington makes point: Washington made a point before the game of singling out Mitch Moreland's improved baserunning the past few nights. Specifically, Moreland pulled up for a single in Saturday's game that hit off the wall but was retrieved quickly by Boston right fielder Shane Victorino.
Moreland came around first base with the intention of going to second base, but he pulled back.
"Now he's putting himself in that position and the decisions are being made properly," Washington said. "You can't get out there and have things happen, sometimes you're going to react and you're going to react totally wrong, but you have to react to react right. That's what aggression is: going until something tells you can't go any more."
Murphy available: Left fielder David Murphy, who was out Saturday with a stomach virus, is available as a pinch hitter for Sunday's game. He'll start Monday in Chicago against Cubs right-hander Scott Feldman.
Berkman will DH: Washington said he'll use Lance Berkman as a pinch hitter in Chicago and Milwaukee. "It will probably be a nice time for him to catch a break," Washington said while declaring he does reserve the right as the manager to change his mind.
Hitting Napoli: Ex-Ranger Mike Napoli said that he didn't think twice about getting hit by Tanner Scheppers in the eighth inning Saturday night. Napoli glared at the mound briefly and threw his bat down. Napoli did get plunked on a 2-0 fastball in a situation in which he had a 2-0 count and was probably taking the pitch with one out and nobody on and the Red Sox trailing 3-1.