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Thursday, June 13, 2013
Dose of Darvish: Rangers turn to ace

By Todd Wills

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Rangers turn to Yu Darvish to help stop the club's June funk.

Their ace is due.

Darvish is winless in four starts, the longest stretch of his career. He's pitched well this month, but has a pair of no-decisions. The Rangers are 4-7 in June. They lost Darvish's last start Saturday in Toronto in 18 innings.

The Rangers need their offense to break out of a rut that has scored two runs a game in consecutive losses to Cleveland. Designated hitter Lance Berkman offered a solution.

"We need a starter to go out there and give us seven shutout innings," Berkman said.

Berkman wasn't trying to pass the buck. The offense needs to do better than .172 with runners in scoring position this month.

But sometimes you need a starting pitching to go out and win a game when the offense only produces two runs. In Toronto, Darvish allowed three runs in the third inning to put his team down 3-0. The Rangers rallied after Darvish was out of the game.

Darvish was getting better than seven runs per start during his first nine outings. Those are easy ones to win. The Rangers have scored a total of 10 runs in his last four starts. He's 0-1 despite a 2.28 ERA for his last four starts.

"There are some games that you give up five runs and you still win, and there's games you give up only one run and you still lose," Darvish said. "So those things you can't really control. But I try to go deep in the game, and keep the team in the game, give them a chance to win."