Saturday, May 25, 2013
Matchup: Derek Holland vs. Felix Hernandez
By Todd Wills
The Rangers face Felix Hernandez for the first time this season when left-hander Derek Holland takes on the Mariners' ace at 9:10 p.m. Saturday night on Fox Sports Southwest, ESPN-FM 103.3 and 1540-AM.
Holland (3-2, 3.30): Holland is 2-0 with a 3.20 ERA in four May starts ... But he has scuffled some in his last two outings, giving up four earned runs in each and getting a no decision ... Holland allowed four runs in 4 2/3 innings against Detroit last Sunday, throwing 106 pitches ... He had three walks and a hit batter and was a victim of the red hot Miguel Cabrera, who hit two home runs off of him ... Holland struggled with giving home runs last season, but Cabrera's two dingers only doubled his season total allowed to four ... Holland will face Seattle for the first time this season ... He was 2-1 with a 5.40 ERA in three starts against the Mariners last season ... Holland has dominated Seattle with a 7-2 record and a 3.74 ERA ... He is 2-0 with 16 2/3 scoreless innings at Safeco Field.
Hernandez (5-3, 2.07): King Felix comes off of his poorest start of the season, allowing five runs in five innings in a 6-0 loss to Cleveland ... He allowed eight hits, needing 106 pitches to get through a draining outing ... The 27-year-old Hernandez had missed a previous start with a sore back ... Despite his recent poor showing, Hernandez is still one of the best pitchers in the American League ... He ranks second in the AL with a 2.07 ERA and is fourth with 69 2/3 innings pitches and 72 strikeouts ... He won his fifth game on May 8 at Pittsburgh, allowing one earned run or fewer for the sixth time this season ... Hernandez has 103 career wins, third on the Mariners all-time list ... He makes his 36th career start against the Rangers, a mind-boggling number given his age ... He is 12-17 with a 3.17 ERA ... Hernandez is 7-9 with a 3.33 ERA in 19 starts against Texas at Safeco Field ... He was great against the Rangers last year with a 2-0 record, a 0.53 ERA and a two-hit shutout on July 14 in Seattle.
Hitters: Elvis Andrus (17-for-54, 9 RBIs) and David Murphy (20-for-66, 2 HRs, 11 RBIs) have had the most success for the Rangers against King Felix. Kyle Seager (4-for-11, 1 HR, 2 RBIs) and Justin Smoak (5-for-18, 1 RBI) have hit well against Holland.