This past weekend the Rangers had the worst road trip of the season, thankfully it was for only three games against Toronto. The Rangers were more than ready to leave Canada and come back down to sunny Texas to face off against American League West rival Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
This again was a short series with it only being two games. The Major League Schedule consists of 162 games a season, so in order to get all the games in and schedule days off for the teams, the schedule seems to be tricky. In your division you play on average of 18 games against your division rivals, this changes depending on the number of teams in your division.
The American League West only has 4 teams, although the National League Central has 6 teams in it. Usually teams will make one trip to their respective teams outside of their division, so Texas plays the Orioles one series in Baltimore and then another series in Texas.
Commissioner Bud Selig introduced inter-league play in 1997. This was the first time that the National League played the American League other than in the World Series. Every year teams play another division in the opposite league, so the match up maybe A.L. West vs N.L. West, next year it would A.L West vs N.L. East. Any how enough of how MLB scheduling works and onto the Rangers sweeping the Angels in two games.
Rangers starter C.J. Wilson only pitched into the first out of the fifth inning, giving up 7 hits, 7 earned runs and 1 walk. Thankfully the bullpen saved a rookie start by Wilson, to not allow anymore runs and keeping the Rangers in the game. Daren O’Day pitched into the six inning, when the Rangers took a one run lead over the Angels, so he picked up the win.
Closer Neftali Feliz picked up his 11 save of the season, which is impressive considering he didn’t start the season as the closer. Former closer turned middle-innings reliever Frank Francisco piched the eighth inning, allowing no hits with one strikeout. The bullpen situation seems to be working well for the Rangers with Feliz-Francisco, so if its not broken, there is no need to fix it.
The Ranger play a 2 game series with the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday-Thursday before starting the first interleague series against the Chicago Cubs. The Cubs will be in town for a three game series over the weekend. In Wednesday’s matchup the Rangers are sending Rich Harden (2-1 4.93 ERA) vs Baltimore’s starter Jeremy Guthrie (2-4 4.13 ERA). The Ranger’s need to focus from this point forward on one game at a time equating to one series at a time.