Texas Rangers: Kurt Suzuki
Once the Rangers signed Geovany Soto as the primary catcher, it was unlikely that Pierzynski would return to Texas. The thought was that he wanted a multiyear deal, but Edes' source is saying the contract is likely for one year. Pierzynski hit .272 with 17 home runs last year in Texas.
The move also impacts another former Ranger as it means Jarrod Saltalamacchia is not coming back to Boston. Saltalamacchia has received an offer from the Miami Marlins, according to reports, and the Minnesota Twins remain interested. He's looking for a multiyear deal.
Consider that the free-agent catchers are quickly disappearing. Brian McCann already agreed to terms on a big deal with the New York Yankees (five years and $85 million, but could be six years and $100 million). Carlos Ruiz got three years from the Philadelphia Phillies. Dioner Navarro is in Toronto. And now Pierzynski heads to Boston.
Trades, of course, are always possible as the Rangers look for someone to pair with Soto, whom the club has tabbed as its primary catcher. The team has discussed J.P. Arencibia and Kurt Suzuki, both now free agents after the Blue Jays non-tendered Arencibia on Monday night. Cincinnati's Ryan Hanigan is a possibility. But many of the names that were circulated and around a few weeks ago are no longer out there.
OAKLAND, Calif. -- Roy Oswalt pitched his best game in a Texas Rangers uniform, allowing one run in 6 1/3 innings in a 5-1 victory over the Oakland Athletics on Tuesday night at the Coliseum.
What it means: The Rangers kept pace with the Angels and the Yankees, who both won. The Rangers remain 5 ½ games ahead of the Angels in the AL West, meaning no matter what happens they will be in first place when they finish their series this weekend in Anaheim. The Rangers remain one game behind the Yankees in the race for the best record in the American League.
Oswalt’s game: Oswalt had little trouble with an A’s team that had hit nine homers and scored 24 runs in its previous three games. Through six innings, Oswalt had allowed just two hits, both to Yoenis Cespedes. In the seventh, he gave up a solo homer to Josh Reddick. He then struck out Cespedes before manager Ron Washington turned the game over to the bullpen.
Oswalt left after 103 pitches, including 72 strikes. He did not walk a batter for the first time in his five starts with the Rangers. He struck out six.
Gentry’s wheels: Craig Gentry made some big contributions with his speed in the first few innings. He saved a run in the bottom of the second when he raced in and made a diving catch of a Kurt Suzuki blooper. He followed that in the top of the third by bunting for a hit when he beat pitcher Bartolo Colon to the bag. Colon then made an errant pickoff throw. As the ball shot into the vast foul territory in Oakland, Gentry went all the way to third. He scored on Elvis Andrus’ single. In the fourth, he was called on to execute a suicide squeeze and he beat the play at first for a hit.
Beltre swings a hot bat: Adrian Beltre homered in the fourth inning, a solo shot that put the Rangers up 2-0. Beltre is hitting .394 over his last 27 games.
Hamilton snaps out briefly: Josh Hamilton struck out in his first three at-bats, running his slump to 2-for-26. In his fourth trip, against left-hander Jordan Norberto, Hamilton launched a homer to left field. It was Hamilton’s 28th homer of the season, tying Adam Dunn for the league lead. He added a sacrifice fly in the ninth.
Ogando returns: Alexi Ogando, fresh off the disabled list, got into the game in the seventh inning with a three-run lead and a runner at first. Ogando, who had been out with a groin injury, walked the first batter he faced but then he got Suzuki and Brandon Inge on pop-ups to escape the jam.
Finally hitting Colon: The Rangers scored four runs against Colon, which was a welcome change. They managed just five hits and no runs in eight innings against Colon when they faced him in Oakland last month. Colon came into the game 18-6 with a 3.61 ERA against Texas, although most of those numbers were racked up when Colon was younger before he missed a couple years with shoulder problems.
Oops: Michael Young failed to score from third on a ground ball to second in the fourth, apparently a bad decision or a bad read on the ball. It didn't hurt the Rangers because Mike Napoli followed with an RBI single.
Up Next: Colby Lewis vs. Travis Blackley at 2:37 p.m. on ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM and FSSW. It’s the final game of the quick two-game series.
|Rangers play-by-play voice Eric Nadel talks all things baseball with Galloway & Company. Does Matt Harrison deserve to be an All-Star starter? |
Griffin (0-0, 3.00): The 24-year-old is scheduled to make his second start of his season and career. ... In his Major League debut last Sunday in Oakland, he had a no decision giving up two runs on a two-run home run in six innings of work. ... Tallied a combined 6-3 record and 2.66 ERA in 15 games with Double-A Midland and Triple-A Sacramento. ... When he was called up, he was third in the A's minor league system in ERA and strikeouts (84).
Hitters: No Rangers have faced Griffin. ... Current A's are 31-for-93 (.333) off Harrison. ... Kurt Suzuki is 8-for-17 (.471) with a double and four RBIs. ... Coco Crisp is 6-for-14 with a double, a home run and four RBIs. ... Brandon Inge is 3-for-10 with a double, two home runs and four RBIs.
Sat. vs. Oakland: TBA vs. LHP Tommy Milone (8-5, 3.83), 6:15 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FOX
Sun. vs. Oakland: RHP Yu Darvish (10-4, 3.57) vs. LHP Travis Blackley (1-2, 3.05 in AL*), 6:05 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FSSW
*acquired by Oakland from San Francisco in early May
Feldman (1-6, 6.00): The 29-year-old will start in the place of an injured Colby Lewis after being bounced back and forth between the bullpen and rotation. ... He has struggled as a starter this season, losing six-straight starts before getting his first win against San Diego on June 19. ... His 0-6 start was the longest season-opening streak in Texas since C.J. Wilson lost his first six in 2005. ... Feldman hasn't had much run support, receiving an average 3.60 runs per 9 innings through his first eight starts (lowest average on the roster). ... He has managed to lower his season ERA from 7.01 to 6.00 after posting a 4.41 ERA with 18 strikeouts and one walk in his last three starts. ... He is tied for fourth in the AL in unearned runs (seven). ... He is 0-3 with a 11.57 ERA in four games against the AL West this season. ... He is 3-6 with a 6.58 ERA (49 ER in 67 IP) in his career against Oakland, having lost his last four starts. ... Allowed a career-high eight earned runs in 1 2/3 innings in his last start against the A's on June 4.
Ross (2-7, 6.02): The 25-year-old is riding a four-game losing streak and is tied for the most losses on the A's pitching staff. ... He has struggled on the road, going 1-4 with a 7.12 ERA in 30 1/3 innings compared to a 1-3 record and 4.82 ERA in 28 innings at home. ... He has not faced Texas since his rookie year in 2010. ... He has pitched six innings and allowed a total of seven hits, one run, no walks and three strikeouts in three games against the Rangers.
Hitters: A's hitters are batting .270 (20-for-74) all-time against Feldman. ... Kurt Suzuki is 5-for-17 with two doubles, four RBIs and four strikeouts. ... Cliff Pennington is 3-for-12 with a double, a triple, two walks and two strikeouts. ... Coco Crisp is 1-for-4 with two RBIs and a strikeout. ... Current Rangers are 3-for-18 against Ross. ... Ian Kinsler is 1-for-3 with a strikeout. ... David Murphy is 1-for-4. ... Mike Napoli is 0-for-4 with a strikeout.
Fri. vs. Oakland: LHP Matt Harrison (10-3, 3.24) vs. RHP A.J. Griffin (0-0, 3.00), 7:05 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/TXA21
Sat. vs. Oakland: TBA vs. LHP Tommy Milone (8-5, 3.83), 6:15 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FOX
Sun. vs. Oakland: RHP Yu Darvish (10-4, 3.57) vs. LHP Travis Blackley (1-2, 3.89), 6:05 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FSSW
|Are you worried about the Rangers at all? They had to have a team meeting over the weekend. Do you think it helped? Do you trust this team in close games? Coop and Nate weigh in. |
Parker (1-2, 2.88 ERA): The 23-year-old won his only start on May 1 against Boston, but despite some solid performances, hasn't managed to get a win since. ... In Parker's last two outings, he allowed one run on nine hits in 13 innings against Minnesota and the Angels, but the A's lost both games and Parker got no-decisions. ... He's a much better pitcher at home, sporting a 2.08 ERA with 21 strikeouts and 11 walks. On the road, Parker has a 4.30 ERA with 10 walks and eight strikeouts. ... He has never faced the Rangers.
Hitters: The A's are hitting just .226 against Feldman. ... Cliff Pennington is 2-for-11 and Daric Barton is 3-for-16 off Feldman. ... Kurt Suzuki is one of the few hitters with success against Feldman going 4-for-16.
Tue at Oak: LHP Derek Holland (4-4, 5.11) vs. LHP Travis Blackley (0-0, 0.82), 9:07 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FSSW
Wed at Oak: RHP Colby Lewis (4-4, 3.50) vs. RHP Bartolo Colon (4-6, 4.34), 9:07 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FSSW
Thur at Oak: RHP Yu Darvish (7-3, 3.21) vs. RHP Brandon McCarthy (4-3, 2.95), 2:37 p.m., ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM/1540 AM/FSSW
Harrison (10-8, 3.06 ERA): The lefty went seven innings in his last outing, a 9-2 win over Seattle. He allowed just two hits over his last four innings after throwing 31 pitches in the third. ... He is 1-1 with a 3.86 ERA against the A's this season. ... In seven 2011 day starts, Harrison is 4-2 with a 1.61 ERA. He will be making his third start of the month after going 3-0 with a 2.04 ERA in July. ... Harrison is the major league leader in number of induced ground-ball double plays with 28.
Harden (3-2, 4.07 ERA): In his last appearance, Harden pitched seven innings in a 4-1 win over Toronto, his first career victory against the Blue Jays. However, he is 0-1 with a 9-0 ERA in his only start this season against the Rangers, a 6-0 loss to his former team on July 7. That game at Rangers Ballpark was marred by tragedy when Brownwood firefighter Shannon Stone fell from the stands trying to grab a ball tossed by Josh Hamilton and later died. ... Harden is is 1-0 with a 3.44 ERA in three day games.
Hitters: The Rangers have a .303 career average against Harden. Michael Young has 33 at-bats against him and is batting .273. Ian Kinsler has four hits in six at-bats against Harden. ... The A's Coco Crisp is hitting .545 with four RBIs against Harrison, and Kurt Suzuki is averaging .455. Both have 11 career at-bats against him.
The Rangers, who had 11 singles but no extra-base hits in Friday's loss to the A's, have used a double and a homer to take the lead. Adrian Beltre short-hopped Brett Anderson's first-inning offering off the left-field wall for a two-out double that scored Elvis Andrus. Young's two-run shot shot to left center also scored Andrus, who singled to start the third.
In the first faceoff between baseball's paternity-leave pioneers, Oakland catcher Kurt Suzuki took Colby Lewis' belt-high fastball just over the left-field home run line in the second to tie the score at a run apiece.
Lewis, who has struggled of late, has allowed three hits and struck out one after three.
Lee (9-4, 2.56 ERA): The veteran lefty has pitched at least 8.1 innings in all three of his starts since coming to Texas. He'll try to follow up his first victory with the club -- ironically the one game in which he did not record a complete game -- by getting his 100th career win. Lee is 1-1 with a 3.42 ERA with the Rangers. he has logged at least 8.0 innings in seven consecutive starts, the longest streak since Toronto's Pat Hentgen had a run of 12 straight from July 28 - Sept. 24, 1996 on his way to the AL Cy Young Award. Lee has 101 strikeouts against just seven walks on the season for a 14.43 strikeout-walk ratio, which is more than double the next-closest major-league pitcher and would easily be a major-league record for a season.
Gonzalez (9-6, 3.75 ERA): The 24-year-old has won his last two starts and three of four. He got the win in his last start against Boston despite giving up four earned runs on seven hits over six innings. In his lone matchup with the Rangers this season, he got hit pretty good, surrendering four earned runs on nine hits in four innings. Was a former first-round pick of the Chicago White Sox in 2004.
Hitters: Only two A's, Coco Crisp (.222) and Mark Ellis have faced Lee more than nine times. Kurt Suzuki has three hits, all singles, in seven career at-bats. Gabe Gross has two hits, including a double, in three at-bats. Likewise, the Rangers aren't too familiar with Gonzalez. Vladimir Guerrero has two hits in 10 at-bats with three strikeouts and Bengie Molina has two hits in nine at-bats. Ian Kinsler is batting 1.000, 2-for-2 with a double.
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
Play Podcast Rangers GM Jon Daniels joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to tackle the tough questions after his team failed to advance to the playoffs.
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Play Podcast ESPN Insider and senior MLB analyst Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the wild-card race and the Rangers' chances of making the playoffs.
Play Podcast Chuck Cooperstein joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why he feels Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish isn't an ace.
Play Podcast Elvis Andrus joins Galloway and Company to discuss the Rangers' stretch run and the morale level in their clubhouse.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss the latest Rangers news, including the team's struggles, Ron Washington's job security and a rumored trade with the Braves.
Play Podcast Ron Washington joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss the Rangers' dismal September, who's to blame for their September struggles and his status as the team's manager.
Play Podcast Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss how some people are calling for the Rangers to fire manager Ron Washington.