Thursday, April 12, 2012

Game 7: Rangers (4-2) vs. Mariners (4-3)

The final game of the series and homestand.
Vargas has started nine games against the Rangers over the past three years, going 3-4 with a 4.53 ERA, which means he gives up a run every other inning. Not good for the mariners. Vargas has a 1-0 record right now and has already started two games. He has a 2.31 ERA but a career 4.49 ERA... so I'm going to go with his career on this one and say that he did a good job against the A's in both of his starts.

Rangers vs. Vargas:

  • Nelson Cruz hits .313 (5-16) with 3 homeruns and 4 RBIs
  • Ian Kinsler hits .400 (8-20) with 4 doubles, a homerun, and 3 RBIs
  • Michael Young hits .417 (10-24) with a double and 3 RBIs
  • Mike Napoli hits .348 (8-23) with 2 doubles, 2 homeruns, and 2 RBIs
The Rangers see the ball well when Vargas pitches, batting .275 (current roster) with 9 homeruns and 18 RBIs (which really should be higher, but I think Vargas is holding a lot of solo homeruns in this mix).

Holland has a 4.50 ERA right now after one start, but I believe that this year he will finish with an ERA under 4.00, as last year he tossed a 3.95 ERA, I think this year will be better than that. Over the last three years, he has a 5-1 record against Seattle with a 3.17 ERA and has held the M's to a .226 batting average during that time.

Mariners vs. Holland:
  • Chone Figgins bats .313 (5-16) with a double and 2 RBIs
  • Frankling Gutierrez bats .286 (4-14) with a double
  • Justin Smoak bats .364 (4-11) with a double and RBI
  • Ichiro Suzuki bats .240 (6-25) with 2 doubles and 3 RBIs

Forecast: I like the Rangers in this one. I have to admit, Joe Nathan is starting to make me nervous, but I will try to keep the faith in our closer to do his job. Rangers take this one, 6-2.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Game 6: Rangers (4-1) vs. Mariners (3-3)

A familiar face comes to visit... hopefully we will make sure it isn't a pleasant visit.
Millwood's first start of the season for the Mariners. Is there a team that Millwood hasn't pitched for in his career? He's on his seventh team and fourth in his last four seasons. I'd list them, but I need to conserve space, so what I'll do is just list the important ones: Texas Rangers.

Millwood has some history against the Rangers, whose current roster bats .289 with 6 HRs and 14 RBIs. His last start against the Rangers, he gave up six runs in six innings in a loss. The Rangers clocked two homeruns, one by Vlad and one by Josh and they both were three run shots. That game was back on 8/22/10.

Colby Lewis has done well against the Mariners the past couple of seasons, going 4-2 with a 2.45 ERA in seven starts. He's also averaged 7.1 innings per start on the M's and fanned more than one per inning in the process.

Mariners vs Lewis:
  • Ichiro Suzuki bats .375 (18-48) with a double, triple, and 5 RBIs.
  • Franklin Gutierrez bats .375 (6-16) with a double, 2 homeruns, and 5 RBIs.
  • Chone Figgins hits .313 (5-16) with a double and an RBI.
  • Justin Smoak hits .750 (3-4) with a double, HR, and an RBI.
The current Mariner roster is batting .275 (41-149) on Lewis with 7 doubles, a triple, 4 homeruns, and 16 RBIs.
Forecast: Another close game? Maybe so. But my gut is telling me the Mariners take this one... not sure why. This is probably be something like 5-3, Mariners, but obviously that is not what I want to happen. Maybe I'm wrong this time? One can hope.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Game 5: Rangers (3-1) vs. Mariners (3-2)

This game features an interesting set of pitchers...
I would still love for Beavan to be in the Rangers organization, but trades... they happen. And getting Cliff Lee at the time was a smart decision, because Lee turned not just CJ Wilson into a great pitcher, but really turned everyone else up a notch or two. And that is what sent the Rangers into a second straight World Series.

Beavan started 15 games last year for the Mariners and went 5-6 while putting up a respectable 4.27 ERA. He game up 13 HRs in 15 games, on pace for 28 during a full Major League season, which isn't horrible... still, Beavan is only 23 years of age. He'll develop into an ace quality pitcher in no time and be giving the Rangers headaches for years to come.

As it is, Beavan has already pitched twice against the Rangers and done respectable both times. He took a win in a 4-0 shutout of the Rangers on 9/16/11 and the loss in a 3-1 game on 7/17/11. Mitch Moreland is the only Ranger to homer against him last year. The Rangers are batting .176 against him (current roster), which really screams to me that Feliz needs to have a great night for the Rangers to have a chance.

So, Feliz needs to have a good game, I say? Well, check these numbers out: The Mariners are 0-28 against Feliz (current roster) with four walks. of those 28 outs, 13 have come by way of strike out. This could end up being a pitching duel. And if that is the case, well, I take the Rangers, as they have a better bullpen and better hitters.
Forecast: Rangers over Mariners 3-2.

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Game 3: Rangers (1-1) vs. White Sox (1-1)

Rangers drop one in the ninth... gggrrrrr.

So, we have the third and final game of this three game series. The Sox send out Gavin Floyd, while the Rangers send out Matt Harrison to the mound.

Over the past three seasons, Floyd has a 5.06 ERA in April, but throws well against the Rangers with a 3.04 ERA and a 2-2 record... in his career six starts, he is 2-3 with a 4.73 ERA. His ERA has gone up in each of his last three seasons, and has a losing season in last two.

Rangers vs. Floyd:
  • Adrian Beltre: .238 (5-21) with a double and 2 RBIs
  • Nelson Cruz: .111 (1-9) with 3 strikeouts.
  • Josh Hamilton: .600 (6-10) with 2 doubles and 4 RBIs
  • Ian Kinsler: .231 (3-13) with a homerun and 2 RBIs.
  • Michael Young: .267 (4-15) with two doubles and a RBI.
The current Rangers roster bats .265 (30-113) with 8 doubles, a triple (Julio Borbon), 3 homeruns (Kinsler, Murphy, and Napoli) and 13 RBIs.

The Rangers offense is struggling coming out of the gate, Cruz is 1-6, Napoli 1-7, Andrus 1-8 and Beltre 0-7... for a combined 3-28 or a .107 batting average. 

So, considering the current trend vs. historical trend... Cruz will continue to struggle tonight. And it doesn't look great for Beltre, Andrus, and Napoli. 

Harrison is a career 2-0 against the Sox in five starts. He has a 3.54 ERA against Chicago and is coming off a 3.39 ERA season where he pulled down a 14-9 record. 

Sox vs. Harrison:
  • Paul Konerko: .091 (1-11) with a double and a RBI
  • Brent Lillibridge: .300 (3-10) with a RBI
  • Brent Morel: .500 (2-4) with a triple and a homerun. 3 RBIs.
  • Alexi Ramirez: .333 (3-9) with a RBI
  • Alex Rios: .429 (3-7) with a RBI

Forecast: Harrison is going to have to pitch one heck of a game to keep these Rangers in this one. He's the right pitcher for this job, but the main concern is will our hitting show up? I can't see those four staying in this opening slump for terribly long, but today is not going to be the day they break out of it. Look for a low scoring game, with the White Sox taking it away from the Rangers once again. Score 3-2.

Saturday, April 07, 2012

Game 2: Rangers vs. White Sox

Rangers won the opener 3-2, just like I didn't predict ;) but I did predict the win, so that should count for something.

This time it is Chicago's Jake Peavy against the Rangers Derek Holland.

Peavy went 1-2 with an 8.78 ERA in the preseason. Good for the Rangers. Peavy hasn't done well when pitching in April over the past several seasons, which is another good thing for the Rangers. In fact, the previous three seasons, Peavy is 0-2 with an 8.80 ERA... I'm not sure this is good coaching, putting Peavy up against the Rangers to open his season.

Rangers vs. Peavy
  • Adrian Beltre is batting .235 (8-34) with 2 doubles, 2 homeruns, and 5 RBIs. He's fanned more times than hit, with 9 strikeouts.
  • Yorvit Torrealba is batting .241 (7-29) with a double, 2 homeruns, and 3 RBIs.
  • Josh Hamilton is batting .500 (6-12) with 2 homeruns and 4 RBIs.
  • Mitch Moreland is batting .750 (3-4) with 2 homeruns and 5 RBIs.
  • Mike Napoli is batting 1.000 (1-1) with 3 walks. I just thought that was interesting, so I had to share it.
As a team, the current roster is batting .289 (33-114) with 6 doubles, 8 homeruns, and 20 RBIs. There shouldn't be any problem with the Ranger's offense in this game.

Derek Holland is a career 27-22 with a 4.73 ERA. When he goes the distance, he shuts them down. He has 5 complete games in 63 starts, all five are shutouts. He doesn't have much success with the White Sox (11.05 ERA; 0-1 record in two starts). The Sox hit him good with a .364 batting average and have gone yard 3 times in 7.1 innings. The Ranger fan in me says this will change. Those numbers are from last year. Hum.

On a good note, Holland is going to be better than those numbers indicate. The current roster is batting .286 (10-35) against him (still, not much better than the Rangers vs. Peavy) with a double and a homerun. Holland's stock is going up, and I don't think Peavy's stock is going up, but going down. Looking at strickly the numbers I have seen, I like the Rangers in this one.

Forecast: Rangers over the Sox, 7-4. Holland goes six plus innings, Nathan gets another save.