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American League Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, April 6th (All times Eastern)
LA Angels of Anaheim (1-3) at Texas Rangers (3-1), 4:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: LA Angels - Tommy Hanson (0-0, 0.00) Texas - Matt Harrison (0-1, 7.94)
(Sports Network) - Matt Harrison tries to bounce back from a shaky Opening Day effort when the Texas Rangers continue a three-game series against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Rangers Ballpark.
Fresh off an 18-win campaign in 2012 and 5-year, $55 million extension in the offseason, Harrison was roughed up by the Houston Astros in his first start on Sunday, as he allowed six runs and six hits in 5 2/3 innings. He also walked three batters and struck out nine.
"It was the opener, not the last game of the season," Harrison said. "You're not going to win or lose the division on the first game of the season, but it would have been nice to win the game."
Harrison has faced the Angels 12 times (7 starts) and is 3-4 against them with a 4.71 ERA. He was 1-2 against them a year ago with a 5.31 ERA.
The Angels, meanwhile, will counter with righty Tommy Hanson, who'll be making his debut with the club after being acquired from Atlanta for reliever Jordan Walden this winter.
Hanson, who has never faced the Rangers, spent four seasons with the Braves and owns a career record of 45-32 with a 3.61 ERA in 108 starts. He was 13-10 with a 4.48 ERA in 31 outings last year.
Texas drew first blood in this set on Friday, as Adrian Beltre tied the game with a seventh- inning homer and Ian Kinsler plated the winning run with an eighth-inning single to carry the Rangers to a 3-2 win.
A.J. Pierzynski added an RBI triple for the Rangers, who were coming off a series win at Houston to begin the season.
"That was a heck of a win," said Rangers manager Ron Washington. We ground it out the whole way. I wouldn't say it's a blueprint for the way we want to win games, but we're capable of winning any way we want. With the pitching and defense, we only needed three."
Tanner Scheppers (1-0) tossed a scoreless eighth and Joe Nathan followed suit in the ninth for his first save. Derek Holland allowed six hits and two runs with five strikeouts in his seven-inning outing.
Chris Iannetta homered and Mike Trout hit a run-scoring double for Los Angeles, which has dropped three in a row after an Opening Day victory.
Josh Hamilton's return to Arlington did not go well, as the outfielder was soundly booed by his former home crowd during an 0-for-4 performance which included a pair of strikeouts.
"I'm glad I could help create spirit and fire in this town," Hamilton said of the boos. "This was louder than any playoff game that I've ever been to."
Hamilton is just 1-for-16 with eight strikeouts on the season.
"Josh couldn't get the barrel on some of them and got a little anxious. I don't know if Josh was so amped it affected his performance. He's a little disappointed with the way the day went," noted Angels manager Mike Scioscia.
In his Halos debut, Jason Vargas surrendered eight hits and one run over 5 2/3 frames. Scott Downs (0-2) was charged with the deciding run.
On the milestone front, Nathan is now one save shy of 300 for his career.
04/06 10:28:53 ET
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