Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Extra Bases: Rangers turn to Perez again
By Todd Wills
ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Texas Rangers turn their weary eyes to rookie left-hander Martin Perez -- again.
It's been a good place to go.
Perez has been the Rangers' most reliable winner with six consecutive victories entering Tuesday night's game against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Perez is 6-0 with a 2.54 ERA during a stretch in which he's carried the rotation.
The Rangers need another big effort from Perez after Monday night's 1-0 loss to the Pirates. Another 1-0 defeat for Yu Darvish.
Can Perez deliver?
Twice during his hot streak he's won after a Rangers' loss -- first on Aug. 17 against Seattle and last Tuesday at Oakland. Both wins came in the middle game of a three-game series and were the only victories against the Mariners and the A's.
The Rangers would have had a couple of losing streaks if not for Perez, including a six-game skid if not for his 5-1 victory over the A's last week.
"He's handled himself admirably for a young kid," manager Ron Washington said. "To go out there and take the ball and stay under control and do what he can do, he's done a great job. I'm just enjoying what he's doing."
Perez will have a big challenge trying to keep up pitch-for-pitch with Pittsburgh's Francisco Liriano, who is 15-7 with a 2.98 ERA. Liriano is coming off an awful start against Milwaukee, one in which he allowed seven runs in three innings.
WHAT'S UP NOW: Rapid reaction from the Rangers' 1-0 loss to Pittsburgh on Monday night. Plus, a post-game blog on a brilliant night by Yu Darvish that resulted in yet another frustrating 1-0 loss.
ON DECK: Martin Perez (9-3, 3.41 ERA) and Francisco Liriano (15-7, 2.98) in a battle of left-handers at 7:05 p.m. Tuesday night.
QUESTION OF THE DAY: What one lineup move would you make to fix the Rangers' offense?