Texas Rangers First Pitch: Game 31- Martin Perez


Apr 18, 2014; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Rangers starting pitcher Martin Perez (33) celebrates after defeating the Chicago White Sox 12-0 at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Jim Cowsert-USA TODAY Sports

Texas Rangers number two pitcher Martin Perez struggled against the Oakland Athletics and hopes to bounce back like Yu Darvish did yesterday.

Some have questioned if Martin is truly the Rangers number two guy, but after his back-to-back complete 3-hit games, that should quiet many of his doubters.

Today he’ll need find the magic he worked against the Chicago White Sox and the Oakland Athletics to beat a very good Colorado Rockies team.

The Rockies are very similar to the Oakland Athletics or even the Tampa Bay Rays.  They have cheap talent and have picked up guys at a bargain over the years to build a very competitive team.  They are currently second place in the N.L. West only 2 game behind the San Francisco Giants.

If you are wondering how good the Rockies are, their team batting average of .298 is ranked number one overall in the majors.  Also, if you thought Shin-Soo Choo was an on-base machine, they have their own with Troy Tulowitzki who leads the majors with an on-base percentage of .500

With a similar team like the Athletics, Martin Perez might have is hands full.  Last week the A’s were patient and waited for their pitch.  Also, Perez wasn’t able to hit his spots.

He commented after the game about the A’s.

"“They looked more aggressive tonight,” Perez said. “They didn’t swing too much, they just waited for a pitch and they knew that I missed the zone.” (MLB.com – Dave Sessions)"

If Perez does struggle, he’ll need to hope that the Texas Rangers defense has his back.  Michael Choice struggled in left field and the always steady Elvis Andrus committed 2 errors to bring his total up to 7 against the A’s.

The Rangers do have Shin-Soo Choo playing in left field today, which will help out the issues in the outfield.  Also, Ron Washington has demoted Andrus to the nine-hole in the lineup.  He’s had his worst April in his career, which could be contributed to him not playing in offseason ball for this first time in his career.

The Texas Rangers offense did show up yesterday against the Angels.  Prince Fielder went 3 for 4 and even J.P. Arencibia managed to collect 2 hits.

It will be interesting to watch Martin Perez hit tonight.  He did take batting practice some last week in preparation for today’s game.  If Perez is able to hit his spots and get ahead in the counts, he should setup the Rangers for a win.   The Rangers will play the Rockies four times over four day, 2 there and 2 here.   Don’t count on a sweep, the Rangers should be able to win 3 of 4, but must likely will split the series against a hard hitting Rockies lineup.