American League Preview from The Sports Network
Sunday, August 5th (All times Eastern)
Texas Rangers (63-43) at Kansas City Royals (44-62), 2:10 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Texas - Derek Holland (7-6, 4.96) Kansas City - Luke Hochevar (7-9, 5.22)
(Sports Network) - The Texas Rangers will try to complete a three-game sweep of the Kansas City Royals on Sunday afternoon when the two teams square off at Kauffman Stadium.
The Rangers took Friday's series opener 5-3 and followed that up with a 4-2 victory over the Royals on Saturday evening.
Scott Feldman pitched 7 2/3 strong innings, allowing two runs on six hits and striking out four to capture his sixth win of the season. Alexi Ogando pitched a scoreless ninth for his third save and second of the series.
"I want to get a complete game," Feldman said of being pulled in the eighth. "One of these days I'd love to get one, but as long as we're winning and I'm keeping the team in the game, I'm happy with that."
The powerful Rangers were led on offense by a surprising source in rookie first basemen Mike Olt. The 23-year-old, who was called up from Double-A on Thursday, went 1-for-2 in the game with a pair of RBI, the first of his career. Josh Hamilton also added a pair of RBI on a 1-for-5 night.
Texas has now won four straight games. The win also gives the Rangers their first series win since taking two of three from Boston at the end of July.
Will Smith took the loss for Kansas City, allowing all four runs on eight hits during his 5 2/3 innings of work.
Lorenzo Cain went 2-for-4 and Alex Gordon and Chris Getz each had RBI ground outs on a night when Kansas City failed to take advantage of scoring opportunities. The Royals went 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position.
After a sweep of Cleveland earlier in the week, Kansas City has now lost back- to-back games and is 4-6 in its last 10 games.
Luke Hochevar will go for a team-leading eighth win when he takes the hill for the Royals Sunday afternoon.
The 28-year-old right-hander has managed to accumulate a team-leading record of 7-9 this season despite an inflated 5.22 ERA over 21 starts and 119 innings pitched.
In his last start he struggled early on, allowing three runs in the first three innings before settling down. He ended with a line of six innings, three runs, seven hits and six strikeouts as he picked up his seventh win with the Royals downing Cleveland, 8-3.
Hochevar had a career-high 11 wins a season ago and will have plenty of opportunities to top that mark with two months of the season remaining.
On the bright side Hochevar has had success in his four career starts against the Rangers. He is 2-0 with a 3.08 ERA in those appearances although he has yet to make an appearance against the Rangers this season.
Opposing Hochevar for the Rangers will be Derek Holland, who will be trying to bounce back from a rough outing in his last start.
Holland was tagged for six runs on five hits and four walks over 6 2/3 innings of work in a 6-2 loss to the division-rival Angels in his last start. It was the second time in the last three starts that Holland has allowed at least six runs.
The loss dropped his overall record to 7-6 and brought his ERA up to 4.96 on the season. Holland has split his last four decision as well.
Holland has pitched well on the road this season with a 4-2 record and 3.40 ERA in seven away starts, a trend he will try to continue today.
Holland is 1-1 with a 4.57 ERA in five career appearances, three of which are starts, against the Royals. He pitched a scoreless inning of relief in his only appearance against the club this season.
08/05 10:51:02 ET