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If the Texas Rangers’ starting pitchers keep this up, the American League West race could be over by the All-Star break. The Rangers starters are 9-0 with a 2.37 ERA after Yu Darvish pitched into the seventh inning Thursday, helping Texas cruise to a 10-3 win over the Detroit Tigers in the series opener. Texas has won seven straight and own the majors’ best record at 11-2.
The Tigers were out-hit 19-5 in the opener, and they’ll likely need to double their output to keep pace with Texas, which is batting .403 (50-for-124) with eight home runs over its past three games. Detroit also needs to figure out a way to slow down Mike Napoli, who is 9-for-18 with five homers and 10 RBIs in his last four games.
Rangers Tigers Betting
When: 7:05 PM ET, Friday, April 20, 2012
Where: Comerica Park, Detroit, Michigan
TV: 7:05 p.m. ET, TXA21 (Texas), FSD Plus (Detroit)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Rangers LH Matt Harrison (2-0, 0.64 ERA) vs. Tigers RH Rick Porcello (1-0, 1.84 ERA)
Harrison is pitching on six days rest because the Rangers had an off-day on Monday. Dating back to last season, he is 6-0 with a 2.01 ERA in his last seven regular-season outings. Harrison, who has allowed just one run in his two starts, is 1-4 with a 6.89 ERA in seven games against the Tigers.
Porcello has gone at least seven innings in his first two starts, including last Sunday against the White Sox when he allowed just one run over 7 2/3 innings. In his two starts, he has induced 18 groundball outs and opponents are hitting just .226 against him.
1. Ivan Rodriguez, who is retiring after a 21-year career, will be honored prior to Monday’s game against the New York Yankees in Arlington.
2. Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera is six RBIs away from becoming the 21st active player with 1,000 or more RBIs.
3. The Tigers have won 18 of their last 25 games against the Rangers at Comerica Park.