Texas Rangers (39-58) at Toronto Blue Jays (50-48), 1:07 p.m. (ET)
07/20/2014 10:38 AM
07/20/2014 11:45 AM
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Texas Rangers and Toronto Blue Jays will wrap up their three-game series Sunday at Rogers Centre, as Mark Buehrle tries to improve on his double-digit win total.
The visiting Rangers will counter with young righty Nick Tepesch, who will make his 11th start on the season.
Tepesch enters the contest sporting a 3-5 record on the year with a 4.31 earned run average. In 10 starts, he's fanned 35 batters and walked 21. The 25-year-old has allowed batters to hit .254 off him this season.
In his past seven starts, Tepesch has only picked up one win and one no- decision, as the rest have resulted in losses. That includes his most recent outing against the Angels last Friday in which he went six innings and gave up three runs on six hits and fanned just two hitters. Tepesch is looking to end a personal two-game skid.
He's pitched just one game against Toronto in his career, a seven-inning effort where he gave up six runs and picked up the loss. His ERA against Toronto is 7.71.
Buehrle, on the other hand, is fresh off his All-Star selection, although he didn't play. In the first half of the season, he compiled a 10-6 record and an impressive 2.64 ERA, which is among the best in the American League. The veteran lefty has struck out 73 batters on the year.
Despite his high win total, Buehrle hasn't picked up a win since the first day in June. Since then, he's lost five games with two no-decisions. On Friday, July 11, Buehrle lasted just five innings against Tampa Bay in an eventual 8-5 Blue Jays victory. Buehrle wasn't credited with the win, however, as he gave up two runs on nine hits.
He's pitched well against the Rangers, earning a 13-5 career record in 23 games. Buehrle owns a 3.12 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP in 144 1/3 innings pitched against the Rangers.
The Blue Jays got revenge Saturday afternoon for a Friday night loss at home. Toronto nearly blanked the Rangers by taking a 4-1 decision thanks to two runs in the fourth inning and two more in the seventh. It was the eighth inning when Texas finally got on the board.
Marcus Stroman was dominant on the mound for the Jays. He completed seven innings and allowed just four hits and no runs, all while striking out five batters. He earned the win, while Colby Lewis was tagged with the loss for the Rangers after surrendering two runs on eight hits in five innings of work.
"Since he's been here, he's been really good, especially for a young kid," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said of Stroman. "He's a lot more polished than I thought he was going to be."
Jose Bautista, who entered the game leading the American League in on-base percentage, went 1-for-2 at the plate with two walks, and added a run scored. Melky Cabrera became the first AL player this season to surpass 400 at-bats this season as well. He had three hits to pace the Blue Jays.
The win for Toronto snapped a three-game losing streak, while Texas has now lost nine of its last 10 games. The Jays are tied with the Yankees for second place in the AL East Division, and Texas slipped back another game in the AL West standings.
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