Texas Rangers (16-12) at Oakland Athletics (14-14) Finale Preview


Matt Harrison had an awful outing yet again and left before he could even complete two innings for the Rangers. Obviously, the Rangers lost and you can read even more about last night’s game in our recap. However, it’s time for the preview for today’s game, which is the final of the four games at the A’s. Will the Rangers be able to bounce back and secure at least a split for this series or will they fall short this afternoon with their No. 4 starter on the mound and give this series up to the Athletics? If they lose this series, they’ll leave behind a ton of confidence heading to Seattle for their next series.

Let’s take a look at our pitching matchups and how the hitters do against the pitchers to see if we can get a hunch on the outcome of today’s game.

Pitching Matchups

The Rangers will start with No. 4 starter LHP Derek Holland. He is 3-1 with a 5.12 ERA and 27 strikeouts for the season. The 24-year-old struggled his last time out against the Toronto Blue Jays allowing five runs on 11 hits over five innings. He walked three batters while striking out two. That game was his third straight start in which he allowed five runs. He’s got the talent to succeed as a starter, he just needs a different mental approach to the game if you ask me. Against Oakland, Holland is 1-1 with an earned run average of 2.63 over 24 innings.

The A’s will counter with RHP Brandon McCarthy, who I might add is a former Ranger. He is 1-2 with an earned run average of 3.57 for the season with 23 strikeouts. The 27-year-old got his second straight loss Tuesday after allowing seven runs on 14 hits over 5.1 innings against the Angels. He walked one and struck out three. Over his first four starts this year, he had three quality starts so to now have three quality in his first five outings of the year is quite surprising. Against Texas, McCarthy is 1-2 with an earned run average of 3.94 over 16 innings.

Pitchers vs. Hitters

LHP Derek Holland:  Holland has been able to hold Coco Crisp and Ryan Sweeney to no hits over two and five at-bats respectively; however, Mark Ellis is 8-for-13 with two RBIs, Kevin Kouzmanoff is 5-for-8, Landon Powell is 2-for-5, Hideki Matsui is 4-for-10 with two homers and four RBIs and David DeJesus is 1-for-3 with one RBI. Daric Barton, Cliff Pennington and Kurt Suzuki are combined for 4-for-23.

RHP Brandon McCarthy: Only five batters have faced McCarthy, two of which have only seen one at-bat. Ian Kinsler is 0-for-1 as is Andres Blanco. Mike Napoli is 0-for-3 while Michael Young is 2-for-6 with one homer and two RBIs and Adrian Beltre is 6-for-15 with one homer and five RBIs.

My Prediction

If one of the pitchers struggle, you can bet the other team is going to win. If they both come out fighting, it’s going to be a tough game. If Holland can get a grab on things, have his velocity and pitches in place, the Rangers bats should be able to back him enough to win the game. However, if Holland struggles like last time out and McCarthy is on top of his game, the Rangers have it all to lose.

What are your predictions? Chime in below and keep checking back to Nolan Writin’ for more previews, recaps and team updates! We should have more coming for you guys soon!