MONDAY UPDATE

BY” Richard W. Humphrey

The Rangers took two of three from Houston over the weekend to move their record back to 10 games over .500 at 26-16. The Rangers have now played 14 series against 14 different opponents, a first in major league history, and have a 9-4-1 record.

Colby Lewis pitched an outstanding game in the finale, taking a six run lead and a shutout into the ninth, before giving up a lead-off home run to end his day. He had struggled in three previous starts, so the turnaround was welcome news for Ranger fans. He also had two hits an drove in a pair of runs to support his own cause.

Saturday’s game was an extremely disappointing loss, as Texas took a 4-0 lead, then watched the normally punchless Astros come back and take the lead on the wings of three home runs. Houston held on to win 6-5. Derek Holland (3-3) was the starting pitcher that couldn’t hold on to the early lead and his ERA has now ballooned to 4.27.

The opening game of the series on Friday night saw the Rangers beat the Astros 4-1. Neftali Feliz (more on him later) struggled with his fastball command. He walked five the last of which ended his night with two outs in the fifth inning, such that he failed to qualify for the win with the Rangers having a lead when he departed. Robbie Ross was spectacular in relief, facing seven batters and getting seven outs. He gave up a single, which was erased on a double play and earned his sixth win of the season. Joe Nathan pitching for the fourth consecutive day, was strong in the ninth to record his ninth save.

Texas will now face an opponent for the second time this season when they open a three game series in Seattle Monday night. The Rangers won three of four from the Mariners in the second series of the season that began April 9th with Yu Darvish’s major league debut. Darvish (6-1, 2.60) will again pitch the opener of this series against the Mariners’ ace, Felix Hernandez.

Neftali Feliz (3-1, 3.16) has been placed on the disabled list with inflamation in his right elbow. He has made seven starts and one relief appearance. This is the first roster move to the 25-man roster that opened the season. Yoshinori Tateyama has been recalled from AAA Round Rock to join the bullpen. Scott Feldman is the reliever that will move into the rotation and is scheduled to start in Wendesday’s series finale.

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