Astros lead the series 1-0
WP: Bud Norris (1 - 0)
SV: Erik Bedard
LP: Matt Harrison (0 - 1)
|8 - 2 win|
|Wed 04/03||1:10 PM CDT|
Tue vs. TEX: Altuve-2b; Wallace-3b; Pena-1b; Carter-lf; Ankiel-rf; Maxwell-cf; Castro-dh; Corporan-c; Gonzalez-ss, Harrell-p.— Houston Astros (@astros) April 2, 2013
The Battle for the Silver Boot rages on in Houston tonight, as the Astros look to stay on top of the AL West. (I'm going to enjoy that while it lasts) Lucas Harrell takes the mound for the Astros after a solid Spring Training record (for what that's worth) of 1-1 and a 2.25 ERA. The key for Harrell is to continue to keep the ground balls coming, something he excelled at last year with the third best G/F ratio in the Major Leagues (2.44). Harrell has a lifetime record of 1-1 and 4.91 ERA against the Rangers. Adrian Beltre, Nelson Cruz, and David Murphy have all had success against Harrell, collectivity they have .460 AVG and 10 RBIs. The top of the Rangers' order, Elvis Andrus and Ian Kinsler, has been held hitless (0-10) in Harrell's two starts. Interesting fact about the return of the Puma, he has hit safely in all 10 games he has played at MMP as a visitor.
The Japanese import, Yu Darvish will making his first start of 2013. Darvish is coming off a masterful close to the 2012 season, 5-1 with a 2.35 ERA in his final eight outings. Darvish won his one start against the Astros last year, giving up two runs in eight innings of work. Justin Maxwell is the only returning Astro with any kind of success against Darvish, a solo-homerun in three at-bats. The Astros are loading up with left-handed bats tonight for Darvish, moving Wallace to third, Pena to first, Castro to DH, starting Ankiel in right, and Corporan at catcher.