Texas Rangers: Brandon Moss

W2W4: Rangers at Athletics

September, 16, 2014
Sep 16
The Rangers begin their final road trip of the season with a three-game set against the Oakland Athletics.

Here’s a preview:

What’s up with the A’s? Oakland is battling to stay alive in the AL wild-card race. The Athletics have gone 32-36 after going 51-30 to start the season. They begin a nine-game homestand this week and need almost every game to keep pace. Josh Donaldson is the team leader in home runs (27), RBIs (95) and hits (142). Brandon Moss is second in hits (113) and RBIs (79). Tuesday’s starter Scott Kazmir has an 8.20 ERA in his last four starts. Oakland has won four of the last five meetings against the Rangers.

What’s up with the Rangers? They’re hot. The Rangers have won three in a row for the first time since June. Leonys Martin has 37 multi-hit games, third on the team behind Adrian Beltre (49) and Alex Rios (38). Martin is hitting .337 in the leadoff spot and hit .385 on the just completed homestand. Beltre leads the Rangers in HRs (18) and RBIs (71). Elvis Andrus has 151 hits and a career-high 33 doubles this season.

Rangers’ injury report: OF Michael Choice had an MRI on his strained left hamstring and is doubtful for the road trip. Jake Smolinski (foot) should return after not playing since July 21. Jim Adduci (concussion) and Scott Baker (elbow) are questionable. Robinson Chirinos has played well in his return from a stiff neck. He’s reached base in five of nine plate appearances.

Pitching matchups: Tuesday: RHP Nick Tepesch (4-10, 4.47) vs. LHP Scott Kazmir (14-8, 3.32); Wednesday: LHP Derek Holland (1-0, 0.86) vs. RHP Jeff Samardzija (4-5, 3.41); Thursday: RHP Nick Martinez (3-11, 4.93) vs. RHP Sonny Gray (13-8, 3.18).

Top stats to know: Rangers beat Yankees

July, 29, 2014
Jul 29

Matthew Emmons/USA TODAY SportsYu Darvish was able to hold the Yankees offense to 2 solo homers by Brett Gardner in a win Monday.
The Texas Rangers were able to overcome a two-run deficit by scoring four runs in the fifth inning to beat the New York Yankees. Here are the top stats you need to know about Monday’s game.

Gardner owns Darvish
Rangers’ starter Yu Darvish was able to withstand a big game from Brett Gardner, who launched two home runs off of him. After picking up three hits in four plate appearances Monday, Gardner is now 5-11 in his career against Darvish in 12 plate appearances. Four of those five hits are home runs.

Gardner’s four home runs are tied for the most that Darvish has given up to any player in his career. The others to take the Rangers ace deep that many times are Mike Trout and Brandon Moss.

Darvish limits the damage
Darvish improved to 3-1 in his career against the Bronx Bombers. In 31 1/3 innings against Darvish, the Yankees have lived up to that nickname by hitting six home runs. Unfortunately for New York, all six of those home runs have been solo shots.

Monday, Darvish threw a strike on 74 percent of his pitches, the highest strike rate of his career. He also locked in when there were men on. With the bases empty, the Yankees were 7-17 (.412 BA) against him. With men on, Darvish held the Yankees to two singles in 12 plate appearances.

Jeter passes Yaz
Derek Jeter also had a big game, going 3-4 to give himself 3,420 career hits. That allowed him to pass Boston Red Sox Hall-of-Famer Carl Yastrzemski for seventh-most all-time in MLB history. Next up, and likely the only other player Jeter will pass on the list, is Honus Wagner who currently has 10 more hits than Jeter.

Did you know?
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Dennis Martinez and Mike Morgan are the only two pitchers to allow a hit to both Derek Jeter and Carl Yastrzemski in their careers.

Martinez is the only one to allow a homer to both.

Yu Darvish, meet the Big Train

September, 14, 2013
ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Big Train can move over and make room for Yu.

That's how preposterous things are these days for Yu Darvish, who now has his name linked to Hall of Famer Walter Johnson, and not because of strikeout records.

Darvish became just the third pitcher since 1916 to lose four games in a season by a 1-0 score, that after the Rangers again failed to score even a single run behind a dominant start by Darvish. This was the must crushing 1-0 loss of the season, coming against first-place Oakland for the second time and putting the Rangers in a 5 1/2-game hole in the American League West.

Darvish joins Johnson, who had the misfortune of losing 1-0 four times in 1916 -- yep, that's 97 years ago -- and Billy Pierce, who suffered the same awful fate in 1955 with the Chicago White Sox.

Darvish was asked after the game if he had ever heard of the legendary Johnson, who among other things is the all-time leader in major league history with 110 shutouts and second to Cy Young with 417 wins.

"I want to guess," Darvish said. "Is he the last guy that last lost four games 1-0 in one season?"

Darvish learned that Johnson was the second to last after Pierce. Darvish is the first pitcher with as many as four 1-0 losses in a season since Orel Hershiser did so pitching in the National League for the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1989.

How is this happening? Simple. The Rangers' offense goes comatose when Darvish pitches.

They have given Darvish two runs or less of support in seven straight games. He actually won the first one, 2-1 against Houston when he took a no-hitter into the eighth inning. The Rangers have scored a total of 11 runs in the last six games Darvish started for them.

Darvish was asked what his frustration level is after a sixth outing without a win?

"My frustration level is zero," Darvish said. "Every team goes through there good spells and their bad spells. We all have to stick together. We have to do our best and fight forward."

What's distressing about this is that Oakland's run Saturday came with two outs in the first inning. Darvish had a one-out walk to Josh Donaldson, then after getting Jed Lowrie to strike out, Brandon Moss ripped a first-pitch cutter into the right-field corner for a double. Donaldson came all the way from first and scored as Ian Kinsler's relay throw was off line.

And that was it. Darvish had 10 strikeouts, the 12th time in 30 starts he's been in double digits. He didn't have another walk and gave up three more hits. The A's only had one more runner get past second base when Donaldson singled off Darvish in the sixth and stole second base.

"He shut them down," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "He gave us a chance. Exactly what his job was today. He did it. We couldn't have asked more."

Well, except for two runs.

Rapid Reaction: Rangers 4, Athletics 3

June, 20, 2013

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Rangers rallied for the third time in the series against Oakland, this time pulling out a 4-3 victory over the A's on Thursday afternoon at Rangers Ballpark thanks to a clutch hit by Ian Kinsler in the seventh and a perfect game-ending relay throw to home plate. The Rangers took three out of four games from the A's, pulling within a game of Oakland in the American League West standings.

Rangers break through: Poor defense put the Rangers in a 3-2 hole, but Kinsler fixed that. With the bases loaded and two out in the bottom of the seventh, Kinsler worked the count full against A's reliever Sean Doolittle and lined a single back up the middle to score two runs and give the Rangers a 4-3 lead.

Kinsler ties record: Kinsler stole his 161st career base in the seventh inning, tying him with Bump Wills for the all-time club lead.

Fantastic finish: Closer Joe Nathan fanned the first two A's he faced in the bottom of the ninth, then allowed a single to Josh Donaldson and a single to Seth Smith. Donaldson was running on the Smith's single and was waved around third after Craig Gentry bobbled the ball in center field. But Gentry got the ball to Elvis Andrus, who delivered a perfect relay throw to A.J. Pierzynski at home to get Smith to end the game.

ESPN Insider and senior baseball analyst Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to discuss some interesting trade ideas for the Rangers.

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Lindblom is solid: Rangers starter Josh Lindblom allowed base runners in every inning but still did what you ask a No. 5 starter to do -- keep his team in the game. He allowed two runs on eight hits and two walks and was hurt by a poor defensive play by Jurickson Profar, but he limited the damage.

Ugly start to sixth: The Rangers used four pitchers in the top of the sixth with the score tied at 1. With Lindblom still in, the inning started with Profar making a lazy throw to first base after a diving stop on what should have been the first out of the inning, but instead was an infield single for Brandon Moss. Donaldson followed with a single to right to chase Lindblom. Rangers manager Ron Washington went to left-hander Joseph Ortiz, who walked the only batter he faced to load the bases. Washington went to the bullpen again for right-hander Jason Frasor against pinch hitter Chris Young, who walked to force in the go-ahead run. Washington then went to lefty Robbie Ross, who kept the top of the sixth inning from turning into a complete nightmare for the Rangers. Coming in with the bases loaded and still no outs, Ross struck out pinch hitter Adam Rosales, got Coco Crisp to pop out to second and John Jaso to strike out, keeping the deficit at 2-1.

Soto sighting: Rangers backup catcher Geovany Soto had one hit in his last 18 at-bats before he launched a home run just over the the center-field wall in the bottom of the fifth to tie the score at 1. It was Soto's third home run and first since May 18 against Detroit.

Up next: The Rangers open a three-game series against St. Louis in their first meeting since the Cardinals rallied to win the 2011 World Series with back-to-back wins at Busch Stadium. The series opens with Rangers left-hander Derek Holland (5-4, 3.30 ERA) facing Cardinals left-hander Tyler Lyons (2-3, 4.65) on Friday night at 7:15 p.m. on Ch. 21 and ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM (1540 AM in Spanish).

Rapid Reaction: Rangers 6, Athletics 5

May, 15, 2013

OAKLAND, Calif. -- The Texas Rangers had to work 10 innings, but they beat the Oakland Athletics 6-5 and evened their series at one win apiece entering the finale on Wednesday afternoon at the O.co Coliseum.

Nelson Cruz joins Galloway & Company to discuss the Rangers' series in Oakland, his ups and downs at the plate and if the PED talks before the season were a distraction.

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Tenth-inning heroics: With one out in the top of the 10th, Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre crushed a solo home run to left center off A's reliever Chris Resop to put the Rangers ahead 5-4. Then, with two outs, first baseman Mitch Moreland launched his second home run of the night, a solo shot to center off Resop. Beltre and Moreland both have nine home runs, sharing the team lead with Nelson Cruz. The Rangers had lost five straight games at the Coliseum before Beltre and Moreland powered them past the A's.

Rangers strike first: For the second straight game, the Rangers struck first, this time grabbing a 3-0 lead in the fourth inning. Shortstop Elvis Andrus led off with an infield single, the Rangers' first hit off Bartolo Colon. With one out, Beltre blooped a double to right, moving Andrus to third. Cruz drove in Andrus with a sacrifice fly to right, and Moreland followed with his two-run blast. The Rangers scored another run in the eighth when Andrus hit another leadoff single, moved to third on Beltre's one-out single and scored on another Cruz sacrifice fly.

Home-run binge: Another day, another impressive home run for Moreland. In the fourth inning, he sent a moon shot high over the right-center wall for a two-run blast off Bartolo Colon for his eighth homer of the season. Colon's 3-1 pitch was belt-high and down the middle, and Moreland didn't miss. Moreland has homered in back-to-back games and six times in his past nine games. He extended his hitting streak to a season-high seven games. He had his fifth career two-homer game.

Good start turns bad: Rangers left-hander Derek Holland cruised through the first four innings, blanking the A's on three hits while striking out four. But he ran into trouble in the fifth and sixth and wound up with a no-decision. In his previous start against the Milwaukee Brewers, he allowed 10 hits but just one run over seven innings in a victory. This time, he allowed eight hits and four runs in just 5⅔ innings, striking out five and walking one. A's left fielder Seth Smith lined a leadoff single to right in the fifth, Nate Freiman singled to center and Holland walked No. 9 hitter Michael Taylor, loading the bases. Holland got Adam Rosales to hit into a double play as Smith scored. Then shortstop Jed Lowrie roped an RBI double to left. Josh Donaldson led off the sixth with a double -- his third straight hit off Holland -- moved to third on a groundout and scored on Luke Montz's sacrifice fly. When Holland gave up a single to Smith, reliever Robbie Ross replaced him. But Freiman greeted him with an RBI double to give the A's a 4-3 lead.

Battle of the bullpens: After Holland exited, Ross, Jason Frasor and Tanner Scheppers combined to allow just two hits and no runs over the next 3⅓ innings. Scheppers pitched two perfect innings, mixing heat that reached as high as 98 mph with effective off-speed pitches. He earned the win. Closer Joe Nathan retired the first batter he faced in the 10th but walked Derek Norris and John Jaso and gave up an RBI double to Smith before striking out Daric Barton and retiring Eric Sogard on a ground ball.

Up next: The Rangers face the A's in the finale of their three-game series Wednesday at 2:35 p.m. on Fox Sports Southwest and ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM and 1540-AM. Right-hander Alexi Ogando will face A's right-hander Dan Straily in the final game of the Rangers' nine-game road trip.

Rapid Reaction: A's 3, Rangers 1

July, 1, 2012

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Texas Rangers failed to complete the sweep as the Oakland A's took the final game of their four-game series 3-1 to close out the Rangers' 10-game homestand.

Despite taking the loss, Yu Darvish made a claim as to why he deserves All-Star consideration with a good performance. A 25th sellout crowd of 45,741 was on hand as the Rangers missed offensive opportunities.

Some thoughts on the game:

What it means: Texas ends a 10-game homestand with seven wins and has a 50-30 record on the season, still best in the majors. The Rangers hold a 5 1/2-game lead over the Los Angeles Angels in the AL West.

Yu makes his pitch: As one of five candidates for the final spot on the AL's All-Star roster, Darvish made a solid case as to why he should be the Rangers' record eighth player in the 2012 All-Star game. He was perfect through three innings and had a shutout through four. He also pitched his way out of a jam in the sixth and allowed minimal damage. One of the few blemishes on Darvish's performance was a leadoff home run from Brandon Moss in the seventh inning to put the A's up 3-1. Darvish finished with 11 strikeouts over seven innings and allowed five hits, three earned runs and three walks.

Yu's Ks: Darvish matched a career-high with 11 strikeouts for the third time this season. It was his fifth game with 10 or more strikeouts, most in the AL and tied with R.A. Dickey of the New York Mets for the most in the majors.

Not so fast: Two of the first three Rangers to get hits in the first three innings were caught stealing. Elvis Andrus (first inning) and Yorvit Torrealba (third inning) were picked off after leading too far off first base and getting caught in rundowns. Andrus was caught again trying to stretch his RBI single to a double in the third inning.

Missed opportunities: The Rangers missed multiple chances to increase their early lead or tie the score later. In addition to the three runners lost, the Rangers failed to drive in Nelson Cruz after he hit a two-out double in the second. Craig Gentry hit a leadoff ground-rule double that was inches away from being a home run in the sixth, but he never reached home thanks to three fly outs from the top of the lineup.

Almost deja-vu: The A's almost saw a flashback of Friday night's eighth-inning collapse. Grant Balfour, who allowed the four-run inning Friday, was on the mound for the A's. Torrealba got a leadoff single and was moved over when Ian Kinsler reached first on an error by third baseman Brandon Inge with one out. But Balfour got Andrus fly out, then Jerry Blevins relieved and induced Josh Hamilton to pop out and end the threat.

Strikeout All-Star: Starting All-Star catcher Mike Napoli, who was playing first, extended his streak to 12 games with at least one strikeout. He waved at strike three for the second out in a 1-2-3 fifth inning and again with Cruz on first base to close out the seventh.

They say it's your birthday: Cruz went 2-for-4 with a double on his 32nd birthday. He has made a habit out of playing well on his birthday, going 5-for-12 in his career. On his birthday last year he went 2-for-5 with a home run, a triple and six RBIs.

Up next: The Rangers have an off-day Monday before they travel to Chicago for a three-game series with the White Sox. Here are the probable starters for the series:

Tue. at CWS: RHP Roy Oswalt (2-0, 4.26) vs. LHP Chris Sale (9-2, 2.27), 7:10 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FSSW.

Wed. at CWS: RHP Scott Feldman (2-6, 6.13) vs. RHP Dylan Axelrod (0-1, 4.50), 6:10 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FSSW/ESPN.

Thu. at CWS: LHP Matt Harrison (11-3, 3.16) vs. LHP Jose Quintana (3-1, 2.19), 1:10 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FSSW.



Colby Lewis
10 5.18 133 170
BAA. Beltre .324
HRA. Beltre 19
RBIA. Beltre 77
RA. Beltre 79
OPSA. Beltre .879
ERAC. Lewis 5.18
SOY. Darvish 182