Nolan Writin Predictions for the Texas Rangers and Tampa Bay Rays Wild Card Series

The series kicks off Tuesday afternoon and all of our writers are here to offer up their predictions on how we think the series is going to go.

Texas Rangers v Seattle Mariners
Texas Rangers v Seattle Mariners / Steph Chambers/GettyImages
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The Texas Rangers get their playoff run started on Tuesday afternoon against the Tampa Bay Rays is what is hopefully a successful series for the Texas Rangers. On our site we have broken down what will be four key matchups to watch in this series and provided some perspective for fans as the playoffs get underway. Now we wanted to give you our predictions for what we believe will happen in this series. You will see predictions from our site experts and contributors.

Stephen Francis

As for a prediction, I believe the winner of game one will take this series. Tampa has announced their first two starters and Tyler Glasnow will take the ball for game one and Zach Eflin will pitch in game two. Glasnow fared very well against this Texas team back in June, allowing just one run on one hit over six innings thanks to a long ball from rookie Josh Jung.

Eflin on the other hand hasn’t faced the Rangers this season. In his one career start against the team, he lost and lasted just four innings, allowing seven runs. For Texas, we know Jordan Montgomery will step to the hill for the opener. Monty hasn’t faced the Rays as a Ranger, but last fared decently against them in June of 2022 for the New York Yankees.

As hard as it is to say, I see Tampa taking a close game one with Texas coming alive in game two. Game three will go to extras, and we all know this team’s track record in extras. They will fall on the road, two games to one. I’d love to be wrong, but this is the gut feeling. 

Prediction: Tampa wins 2-1

Jesse DeTienne's Prediction

This playoff series is being predicated on the fact the Texas Rangers and the Tampa Bay Rays have the top two offenses in the American League this series in batting average (Rangers-.263, Rays-.260) and runs (Rangers-881, Rays-860). But the deciding factor will be the pitching of the two squads.

Jordan Montgomery(4-2 2.79) is1-0 with a 0.90 ERA in his last three starts, this could bode well for the Rangers. Montgomery also has a 1.35 ERA in the postseason. The issue is the bullpen. 

If the starters for the Rangers can pitch quality innings and provide relief from the bullpen with the bats excelling the Rangers can pull out a series win(.299 BA in wins this season).

My X-factor for the lineup is Leody Taveras. His 48 extra-base hits are fourth all-time by a centerfielder in Texas Rangers history. 

Rangers in three.

Why? They're 5-0 in Tropicana Field in the playoffs. They have not suffered a loss and with a potential rotation shake up and one starter getting relief innings, look for the Rangers to continue their success against the Rays in the postseason.

Series MVP will be 2B Marcus Semien. With Rangers fans looking at SS Corey Seager to continue his MVP-caliber season with his postseason experience, this will allow Semien to come in and provide quality at-bats. 

Prediction: Texas wins 2-1