Texas Rangers (37-44) at Baltimore Orioles (42-39), 7:05 p.m. (ET)
06/30/2014 10:30 AM
06/30/2014 10:38 AM
(SportsNetwork.com) - Something's got to give for Joe Saunders.
The veteran left-hander is 7-0 in his career against the Baltimore Orioles, but winless against all opponents since last season as the Texas Rangers visit Camden Yards on Monday night to begin a four-game series.
Saunders has gone 11 starts without a victory, losing seven decisions along the way while racking up a 6.22 earned run average. He's struggled in particular in his last two outings, in which he's failed to last past five innings and has combined to allow 13 runs in just 8 2/3 innings.
Saunders briefly pitched for the Orioles in 2012 and made seven starts, but he's been far more successful in the 10 starts against them while posting a 3.98 earned run average. The teams for which he's pitched against Baltimore are 9-1 in those 10 games, with the only loss coming on June 3 when the Rangers dropped an 8-3 verdict.
He allowed two runs in six innings in that game.
Baltimore counters with righty Ubaldo Jimenez, who's not won since May 8.
The Dominican native is 0-4 since, while the Orioles have managed just 2.45 runs per game of offensive support.
He was dinged for four runs in 6 1/3 innings in his last start on Wednesday, when the Orioles took a 5-4 decision in 12 innings over the Chicago White Sox. He's made seven starts against the Rangers in his career, going 3-2 in five decisions with a 2.83 earned run average.
Jimenez opposed Saunders in the aforementioned June 3 game and allowed a single run in 5 2/3 innings.
The status of Manny Machado is in question for Monday, when he's expected to hear a decision on Baltimore's appeal of a five-game suspension for tossing a bat. Machado has three home runs in his last four games.
On Sunday in Texas, Kendrys Morales drove in the winning run in the top of the ninth inning, helping the Minnesota Twins end their road woes with a 3-2 win over the Rangers.
Josh Willingham started the ninth-inning rally with a single to center off Joakim Soria (1-3). Sam Fuld was brought on to pinch-run for him at first and scored easily as Morales' sharp liner to the corner in left field caromed away from Michael Choice.
In Baltimore, Matt Joyce had the best offensive game of his major league career, homering twice and leading the Tampa Bay Rays to a 12-7 win over the Orioles in the finale of a four-game set.
The Orioles have won seven of their past eight versus the Rangers.
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