Texas Rangers: Hector Noesi

Rapid Reaction: White Sox 5, Rangers 3 (7)

August, 4, 2014
8/04/14
10:58
PM CT

 
CHICAGO -- The Chicago White Sox opened a three-game series Monday with a rain-shortened 5-3 victory over the Texas Rangers, with the game called in the top of the seventh.

How it happened: Tyler Flowers had a home run and a triple, but his biggest hit might have been his two-run single with two out in the sixth inning in a steady rain that put the White Sox ahead for good. The game was called a half-inning later. Hector Noesi gave up three runs on four hits over seven innings while facing the team that designated him for assignment in April. On the day he was named both American League player of the month and rookie of the month, Jose Abreu delivered a two-run single in the third inning.

What it means: After a rough start in which he gave up three early runs, Noesi gave the White Sox the seven innings they sorely needed. The bullpen needed a night off after getting roughed up Sunday, and Noesi’s outing, combined with some timely rain, gave the group a rest. On Sunday, five White Sox relievers combined to give up 15 runs and 18 hits over the final four innings. The White Sox gave up four hits Monday after giving up 23 on Sunday.

Outside the box: Adam Eaton had two more hits Monday to extend his hitting streak to 11 games. He also has reached base in his past 21 contests. He had a streak earlier this season when he reached base in 20 consecutive games. Eaton is batting .448 (39-for-87) during the on-base streak and .490 (24-for-48) during the hitting streak.

Off-beat: Flowers now knows what Adam Dunn can attest to from the last homestand: The top of the U.S. Cellular Field wall is not your friend. Flowers bounced a drive to right field off the top of the wall and directly into the air in the third inning before the ball returned to the field of play. He ended up with a triple. Dunn had a similar play last month; that drive not only hit the top of the wall and bounced up, but the ball also came down on the top of the wall again before falling back onto the warning track. Dunn ended up with a double.

Up next: The White Sox will send left-hander John Danks (9-6, 4.50 ERA) to the mound Tuesday in the middle game of the three-game series. The Rangers will counter with right-hander Colby Lewis (7-8, 5.98) in the 7:10 p.m. CT start from U.S. Cellular Field.

Rapid Reaction: Rangers 8, Mariners 6

April, 17, 2014
4/17/14
4:35
PM CT
ARLINGTON, Texas -- It was a strange day at Globe Life Park as neither starting pitcher could do much of anything. The Rangers had a 4-0 lead, lost it and then managed to snag the advantage back in the fifth and hang on for an 8-6 victory. Texas takes three out of four from the Mariners in the process and has won three straight games for the first time since the last week of the regular season in 2013, when they won seven straight to force Game 163. It's also the first time this season the Rangers have been two games above .500. Some thoughts:

Big inning hurts Scheppers (again): Tanner Scheppers couldn't get through the third inning Thursday. After talking about the need to minimize damage when a five-run inning hurt him in his last start, Scheppers wasn't able to do it. Staked to a 4-0 lead, he gave it all back in two swings -- consecutive home runs from Robinson Cano (his first with the Mariners this season) and Corey Hart. Scheppers ended up allowing six runs (two scored with Hector Noesi on the mound) on six hits in his outing with three walks and two strikeouts. He's allowed 20 runs this season and 17 of those have come in three big innings -- two six-run innings and a five-run inning.

First-inning runs: The Rangers came into Thursday's game with three first-inning runs all season. They scored three with two outs to give Scheppers the lead. After an Elvis Andrus double, Alex Rios struck out for the second out. The Mariners walked Prince Fielder intentionally to pitch to the red-hot Kevin Kouzmanoff. It didn't work. Kouzmanoff doubled to drive home the first run. Mitch Moreland then delivered a two-out, two-run single to center to make it 3-0.

Two-strike hits: All four runs scored in the first two innings by the Rangers came on two-strike counts. Texas came into the game batting .208 in those situations, good enough for third in the AL (two teams have .209 averages). The Rangers increased that average Thursday and did it early. The most impressive at-bat came from Kouzmanoff, who fell behind 0-2, worked it back to 2-2 and hit the eighth pitch for a double. The Rangers also had a two-strike bunt by Leonys Martin in the third that helped score a run when J.P. Arencibia grounded out to the left side of the infield, scoring Moreland.

Kouzmanoff hot: The Rangers' fill-in third baseman just continues to hit, increasing his streak of hitting safely to eight games (that's all that he's played in a Rangers uniform). Kouzmanoff hit doubles in his first two at-bats and has three multi-hit games since getting called up. The Mariners walked Fielder twice to pitch to Kouzmanoff. It didn't work in the first, but it did in the seventh.

Fielder can't cash in: The slugger got two chances with runners in scoring position Thursday and wasn't able to convert. The struggling slugger is now 2-for-19 with runners in scoring position this season. One of those chances came with the count already at two strikes. Rios, who has vowed to stay aggressive on the bases even with Fielder hitting behind him, stole second base and went to third on an errant throw by catcher John Buck.

Relief respect: The Rangers bullpen pitched 6 2/3 innings Thursday and didn't allow a run. Hector Noesi gave up some hard hits, but both of the runs he gave up were inherited runners charged to Scheppers. Pedro Figueroa, Jason Frasor, Alexi Ogando and Joakim Soria got the job done.

Small ball: Martin was asked to put down sacrifice bunts twice Thursday with runners at first and second. He converted both times, and Arencibia, behind him, hit ground balls to score a run in each frame. The bunt eliminated the chance at a double play and Arencibia did what he had to by hitting the ball on the ground. The average won't be helped, but the catcher did his job in those situations.

Up next: The Chicago White Sox come to town with LHP Martin Perez (2-0, 2.70 ERA) opposing RHP Felipe Paulino (0-1, 7.98 ERA) at 7:05 p.m. on ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM and TXA21.

Rapid Reaction: Rangers 3, Mariners 2

April, 16, 2014
4/16/14
9:59
PM CT


ARLINGTON, Texas -- Leonys Martin's single ended a wild ninth inning as the Texas Rangers earned their fourth walk-off win at home this season, 3-2 over the Seattle Mariners. Texas did all the damage with two outs. Kevin Kouzmanoff singled, Mitch Moreland walked and then the Rangers got some help. Donnie Murphy's ground ball to short should have ended the inning, but the flip to second was high. The error kept the inning going and loaded the bases for Martin. A wild pitch scored the tying run, and then, Martin's single to left ended it. A few quick thoughts:

Pitch counts: It seems to be a topic of conversation every time Yu Darvish pitches, but the 27-year-old ace threw 107 pitches in seven innings Wednesday -- an average of 15.2 per inning. He came into the game No. 2 in the AL in pitches per inning at 12.7, nearly four fewer pitches per inning than his average last season. Darvish had two full counts in a 19-pitch first inning and didn't get much more efficient from there. Darvish adjusted by throwing more breaking pitches earlier in the count for strikes, but his command of his fastball and slider was not as good as it was in his first two starts.

Ambushing the fastball: Knowing that Darvish was getting ahead on hitters with first-pitch strikes in his first two starts, the Mariners came in with the idea of swinging at first-pitch fastballs and got a triple off one from Nick Franklin with one out in the second inning to get Seattle in position to score. A single by Mike Zunino plated Franklin. Darvish also walked Dustin Ackley with two outs, and that proved costly, as Abraham Almonte's single brought home Ackley to make it 2-0.

Where's the run support?: Darvish has pitched 22 innings this season, and his offense has yet to score a run for him. Not one. Blame Felix Hernandez for that Wednesday, but it's been like that all season. Darvish has no margin for error. On Wednesday, the Rangers managed just four hits and were 0-for-2 with runners in scoring position while Darvish was on the mound.

Defensive issues: In the two-run second for the Mariners, Shin-Soo Choo charged Almonte's single but seemed to hesitate before throwing home. His throw home was off target and went to the backstop, allowing a runner to advance. A few innings later, Martin and Choo had a communication issue, and what should have been a routine fly-ball out glanced off Martin's glove and hit the ground. It was scored a hit but was another mistake by the defense. Texas has 15 errors in 15 games this season, which leads the AL, but the Rangers have made other miscues that haven't been called errors.

Hernandez dazzles: It sure looked like the Cy Young version of Hernandez on the mound Wednesday. He allowed one run (in the eighth) on four hits with a walk and nine strikeouts. He was lifted after just 96 pitches following Martin's leadoff triple in the eighth. Martin scored on Michael Choice's sacrifice fly. Hernandez threw first-pitch strikes to 22 of the 26 batters he faced. In three career meetings against Darvish (the other two in 2012), Hernandez is 3-0 and has a 0.75 ERA in 24 innings pitched with 28 strikeouts and three walks. Darvish didn't have his best stuff but hung in for seven innings, allowing two runs.

Briefly: Kouzmanoff's ninth-inning single kept his hitting streak alive. He's hit in all seven games he's played for the Rangers. ... Moreland's first walk of the season came against Hernandez in the fourth. He also walked with two outs in the ninth off Fernando Rodney.

Up next: Right-handed pitcher Tanner Scheppers (0-1, 7.88 ERA) goes up against righty Erasmo Ramirez (1-2, 5.63 ERA) at 1:05 p.m. on ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM and Fox Sports Southwest.

Rapid Reaction: Rangers 3, Mariners 1

May, 22, 2012
5/22/12
11:52
PM CT
Matt Harrison pitched seven strong innings and Joe Nathan collected his 10th save as the Rangers evened the series with the Seattle Mariners at a game apiece with a 3-1 win Tuesday.

How it happened: Pitching was the key. Rangers starter Matt Harrison needed 35 pitches to get through a seven-batter first inning in which he gave up one run. Harrison needed just 26 pitches in the next three innings combined. He also had a stretch of nine straight batters retired end with a one-out double in the fifth inning. Harrison pitched into the eighth inning, and he left the game after giving up singles to the first two batters. Mike Adams inherited those two runners and retired the next three to hold the lead at 3-1. Joe Nathan closed the game for his 10th save.

PODCAST
Rangers manager Ron Washington talks with Bryan Dolgin immediately following the Rangers 3-1 win in Seattle.

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Seattle's finest: Harrison is now 7-1 in his career against the Mariners. His line Tuesday: 7-plus innings, seven hits, one run, two walks and six strikeouts on 114 pitches (75 for strikes). He is the Rangers' third five-game winner, joining Yu Darvish (6) and Robbie Ross (5).

Messing with Texas: Ichiro Suzuki’s first-inning single gave him 291 career hits against Texas, and his single in the eighth inning moved him past George Brett for the most hits against the Rangers.

Smoak signals: Former Ranger and current Mariner first baseman Justin Smoak drove in the Mariners' first-inning run with a single.

Not in the box score: Josh Hamilton made a great catch with his back to home plate while running down Casper Wells' drive on the warning track in center field to close out the bottom of the first inning and leave the bases filled with Mariners. Hamilton made another catch up against the center-field wall when Alex Liddi led off the third inning.

Walk through: Mariners starting pitcher Hector Noesi was perfect through two, but then he walked the leadoff man in the third and another Ranger with one out. Later that inning with two outs, Elvis Andrus drove in both of those walked batters with his third triple of the season.

In the box score: Hamilton swung on the first pitch following the Andrus two-RBI triple, and he delivered an RBI double for a 3-1 Rangers lead. Prior to that hit, Hamilton was 3-for-18 since his 16-game hitting streak.

Gold glove & off glove: Adrian Beltre made a sweet diving stop of Dustin Ackley’s grounder in the fifth for the second out, but Liddi followed with a grounder off Beltre’s glove for an error. Shockingly, Brendan Ryan, who moved up from second base to third base on that play, did not try to score as the ball rolled toward shallow left-center field. The score stayed at 3-1 with the Rangers leading.

HR drought: Ian Kinsler has not hit a home run in the last 24 games. He has just one RBI in his last 15 games.

Bullpen: Adams has appeared in five of the six games the Rangers played against the Mariners this season.

Rotation: The Rangers starting rotation stays in the same order, which means everyone gets an extra day of rest in between starts thanks to Thursday’s scheduled off day.

Matchup: Matt Harrison vs. Hector Noesi

May, 22, 2012
5/22/12
2:00
PM CT

SEATTLE -- The second game of this three-game series features Rangers LHP Matt Harrison and Mariners RHP Hector Noesi. First pitch is at 9:10 p.m. on ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM and FSSW. Here’s a closer look at the starting pitchers:

Harrison (4-3, 5.21 ERA): Harrison is scheduled to make his ninth start this season Tuesday on four days' rest. … He’s 1-3 with an 8.10 ERA in his last five starts after starting 3-0 with a 1.66 ERA. … Harrison has won his last five starts against the Mariners. He went 4-0 in four starts last year with a 1.98 ERA. … He’s won all three starts at Safeco Field and holds a 1.25 ERA in five career games in Seattle. … In 13 games against the Mariners, Harrison is 6-1 with a 2.67 ERA. It’s his most wins against any opponent. … Harrison’s .125 opponents batting average against left-handed hitters ranks second in the majors behind the New York Mets’ Johan Santana.

Noesi (2-4, 5.61 ERA): In his last outing, Noesi allowed a run on five hits in 6 1/3 innings against the Cleveland Indians. … He’s 2-1 with a 3.86 ERA in three starts at Safeco Field. ... He’s 0-1 with a 13.50 ERA in two games, one start, against Texas in his career. … In his start against the Rangers earlier this season, Noesi gave up seven runs on six hits in three innings.

Hitters: The Mariners have a .183 batting average against Harrison. ... Dustin Ackley (0-for-11), Mike Carp (0-for-10) and Miguel Olivo (0-for-14) are hitless against Harrison. ... Ichiro Suzuki leads the team with seven hits off Harrison (7-for-31). ... It’s a small sample size, but Nelson Cruz (2-for-2) and Mitch Moreland (1-for-2) have each homered against Noesi. … Elvis Andrus (1-for-2), Adrian Beltre (1-for-3), Josh Hamilton (1-for-2) and Michael Young (1-for-3) have collected hits off Noesi.

Up Next:

Wed. at Sea.: Scott Feldman (0-1, 3.00) vs. RHP Kevin Millwood (2-4, 4.17), 2:40 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540/FSSW
Thu.: Off day
Fri. vs. Tor.: LHP Derek Holland (3-3, 4.27) vs. Brandon Morrow (5-2, 2.63), 7:05 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540/TXA-21
Sat. vs. Tor.: RHP Colby Lewis (4-3, 3.30) vs. RHP Henderson Alvarez (3-4, 3.30), 2:05 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540/FSSW

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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Colby Lewis
WINS ERA SO IP
10 5.18 133 170
OTHER LEADERS
BAA. Beltre .324
HRA. Beltre 19
RBIA. Beltre 77
RA. Beltre 79
OPSA. Beltre .879
ERAC. Lewis 5.18
SOY. Darvish 182