Texas Rangers Eye on the Enemy: Who’s hot on the Rockies right now?
By David Esser
Set to kick off a three-game series on the road at Coors Field, the Texas Rangers are hoping to string together a few wins together after a brutal stretch of games against the LA Angels and the Seattle Mariners. Despite (rather surprisingly) securing a sweep over the Astros no more than a week ago, the Rangers failed to earn a single win against the Angels and Mariners over a six-game stretch.
While the Rockies should in theory present an easier challenge (they’re currently just 20-34 on the season), the Rangers still have to show up and take care of business if they want to leave Colorado’s hitter-friendly ballpark with a series win.
Previewing the upcoming Texas Rangers-Colorado Rockies series:
After checking in with our friends over at roxpile.com, FanSided’s Colorado Rockies blog, here are the three players that they recommend we keep an extra close eye on throughout the midweek affair:
The Rockies best overall player after Trevor Story, Charlie Blackmon is coming off a scorching hot month of May. He slashed .310/.396/.452, and his RBI total is up to 25 on the season. He’s also poured in 14 extra base hits.
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With Story currently injured and Nolan Arenado off enjoying life in St. Louis, Blackmon is the main player the Rangers have to concern themselves with when it comes to navigating through Colorado’s lineup. Blossoming right-hander Dane Dunning takes the mound first for the Texas Rangers tonight – it’ll be interesting to see how he attacks Blackmon.
A high-velocity right-handed reliever who just recently got activated off the injured list, Carlos Estevez has been perfect in his most recent three outings (3.1 innings pitched.) Prior to his injury (right middle finger strain), Estevez was equally as impressive, as his season ERA currently sits at 2.70 and his WHIP at a 1.050.
Like previously mentioned, Coors Field is a ballpark known for its high frequency of offense, and the Rockies starting pitching staff has really struggled keeping balls in the park this season. They only have one starter with an ERA under 4.00, which should obviously play to the Rangers advantage.
However, if Texas is unable to jump on the opposing starter quickly, they could run into trouble trying to deal with the likes of Estevez coming out of the bullpen in a hypothetical close game.
Continuing with the emphasis on the Rockies reliever room, their closer Daniel Bard is another arm who’s coming off a productive month of May. He’s allowed just one earned run to cross home plate over his last nine outings, with his last six all being scoreless.
Similar to that of Estevez, this is probably a pitcher the Rangers would rather avoid as much as possible this series. Despite Bard’s current 4.50 ERA, he’s showcased an exceptional level of poise on the mound as of late.
At 22-33, things are slowly but surely starting to get out of hand for the Rangers. It’s pretty much a foregone conclusion that they’ll once again be “sellers” at this year’s trade deadline, but you’d still like to see them stack up some wins against some of the lesser teams in the MLB, and that starts this weekend in Colorado against the Rockies.
Make sure you go toss @RoxPileFS on Twitter for a Rockies perspective on things!