MLB Game Preview - Rangers v Astros

 
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3
Final 1 2 3   4 5 6   7 8 9   R H E
Texas0 0 0 0 0 2 1 0 0 3100
Houston0 1 3 0 0 0 0 0 x 472
4
  W: J. Verlander (12-4)   L: M. Minor (8-5)   S: R. Osuna (21)
5:10 PM PT6:10 PM MT7:10 PM CT8:10 PM ET20:10 ET0:10 GMT8:10 5:10 PM MST7:10 PM EST7:40 PM VEN4:10 UAE (+1)7:10 PM CT, July 19, 2019
Minute Maid Park, Houston, Texas  Attendance: 42,287

Slumping Rangers look to regain momentum vs. Astros

According to STATS
According to STATS

Texas Rangers at Houston Astros

  1. The Rangers have allowed 55 runs over their last five games, the most the team has ever allowed over any five-game span in franchise history. The only other team in MLB to allow 55+ runs over any five-game span in 2019 is Colorado, who allowed exactly 55 runs from July 13-16 (all games played at Coors).
  2. Houston is 4-4 in its last eight games, splitting two four-game series on the road against the Rangers and the Angels. Houston is 30-11 against AL West teams this season, including a 12-1 mark at home.
  3. In 26 career games, Yordan Alvarez has 34 hits and 31 RBI. Since RBI became official in 1920, only three other players have recorded 30+ hits and 30+ RBI through as many games: Jim Greengrass (1952-53), Zeke Bonura (1934) and Mandy Brooks (1925).
  4. Danny Santana hit two home runs in the Rangers' most recent game, a 19-4 loss against Arizona. Santana has 13 HR in 249 plate appearances this season, equaling his career total entering this season across five seasons and 1165 plate appearances.
  5. Through 20 starts this season, Justin Verlander has a 0.81 WHIP and a .169 opponent batting average. The last two pitchers to have a sub-0.85 WHIP and a sub-.170 opponent batting average through 20 starts in a season were Pedro Martinez in 2000 and Luis Tiant in 1968.
  6. Mike Minor allowed four earned runs in 5.0 innings when these teams faced off last Saturday. Minor allowed three base-hits with runners in scoring position in that start -- in his six prior starts, Minor limited opponents to two combined hits with RISP in 41.1 IP.
Notes Applicable For Series Dates: 7/19/2019 thru 7/21/2019
(AP Photo/David Kent)

The Houston Astros survived an eight-game road trip through Arlington, Texas, and Anaheim, Calif., and somehow earned a split despite serious concerns regarding the depth of their starting pitching.

By late Thursday evening, their attention had turned to a more immediate problem: managing some rest during the short turnaround between the series finale against the Los Angeles Angels and the start of their three-game series against the visiting Texas Rangers on Friday.

With an inexplicably late scheduled start in Orange County, the Astros were scheduled to arrive in Houston at 5:15 a.m. on Friday morning. Instead of having the benefit of an afternoon start to cap their series, which Houston split with a 6-2 victory Thursday, the Astros faced a late departure from California and a home landing approximately 14 hours before first pitch against Texas.

"I'm going to try," Astros outfielder George Springer said of squeezing in some sleep on the flight home. "I'm going to force myself to."

Right-hander Justin Verlander (11-4, 2.98 ERA) will start the series opener for the Astros. He was victorious in his last outing, allowing two runs on four hits and one walk with seven strikeouts over six innings in a 12-4 victory over the Rangers on Sunday in Arlington. It marked the first time in six starts that Verlander did not allow a home run.

He is 16-8 with a 2.79 ERA over 29 career starts against Texas, including a 3-0 mark and 2.63 ERA over four starts this season.

Left-hander Mike Minor (8-4, 2.73 ERA) gets the start for the Rangers opposite Verlander. Texas is 0-2 in his two starts this month, with Minor posting a 6.75 ERA in those outings including a 7-6 loss to the Astros on Saturday when he allowed four runs on seven hits and three walks over five innings.

Minor was 3-0 with a 1.70 ERA in June as the Rangers won all five of his starts that month. He is 3-3 with a 4.48 ERA over 14 career appearances (11 starts) against the Astros, including a 1-1 record and 3.71 ERA over three starts this season.

What was a promising start to the second half quickly fizzled for the Rangers. Texas has lost four consecutive games and has been outscored 40-10 over its past three contests. Friday in Houston marks the start of a 10-game road trip that includes three games in Seattle and four in Oakland.

The Rangers find themselves in need of positive momentum.

"We've got to play better, obviously," Texas manager Chris Woodward said, "overall in pretty much every way. We've got to hit better, we've got to pitch better -- I mean, it's pretty clear cut we're not doing what it takes to win ballgames right now. We've got to look in the mirror and say we've got some pretty tough opponents coming up.

"We played really well against the Astros the first three games, and we've got a tough pitcher coming up with Houston. I don't think our guys are going to back down at all. I think we've been pretty resilient all year. Our guys have just got to step it up and play better."

--Field Level Media

Updated July 19, 2019

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