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American League Preview from The Sports Network
Monday, August 20th (All times Eastern)
Baltimore Orioles (66-55) at Texas Rangers (70-50), 8:05 p.m.
Probable Starting Pitchers: Baltimore - Miguel Gonzalez (5-2, 3.38) Texas - Ryan Dempster (1-1, 8.31)
(Sports Network) - Ryan Dempster tries to get himself right on Monday when the Texas Rangers open a three-game series with the Baltimore Orioles at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington.
Dempster has not exactly panned out for the Rangers since being acquired from the Chicago Cubs at the non-waiver trade deadline. In three starts with the Rangers Dempster has gone 1-1, but has pitched to a 8.31 ERA, allowing eight runs in two of his three outings.
He had allowed just 18 runs in his final 10 starts with the Cubs.
The 35-year-old righty last pitched back on Aug. 13 against the New York Yankees, who ripped him for eight runs and nine hits in six innings. He was slated to throw again on Friday, but had his start skipped due to personal reasons.
"He's a pro," Texas manager Ron Washington said. "He went up against a hot Anaheim team and a pretty good New York Yankees team. He had two innings against that Yankees team he showed us real good stuff. After that, he just started elevating the baseball.
"I'm pleased with him. We got to get (his) feet wet, he has to get comfortable. We will see how it goes, but he can pitch."
Texas won the final two games of its three-game set with the Toronto Blue Jays over the weekend. On Sunday, Michael Young drove in five runs and homered for the first time since May 7 in the Rangers' 11-2 win.
Matt Harrison (14-7) became the fourth American League pitcher to 14 wins, as he gave up two runs on two hits with seven strikeouts in eight innings.
"He worked fast, he got quick outs, he pounded the strike zone, he used all his pitches," Washington said of Harrison's outing.
Baltimore, meanwhile, also captured a series win this weekend, taking two of three from the Detroit Tigers. Despite falling behind, 5-0, in Sunday's rubber match, Nate McLouth hit a go-ahead two-run triple in a three-run fourth inning, capping the comeback and lifting the Orioles to a 7-5 win.
Wei-Yin Chen (12-7) settled down to throw five innings, getting the win after giving up seven hits and two walks. The rookie left-hander struck out four as the Orioles moved to 11-4 in their last 15 games to remain in possession of the AL's second wild card slot.
"We were confident. Obviously we feel like we can win every game," said O's shortstop J.J. Hardy. "When they scored five, I feel like we knew we could score more than five."
Hoping to keep the Orioles in the win column this evening will be righty Miguel Gonzalez, who has won his last three decisions. Gonzalez beat the Boston Red Sox on Wednesday, holding them to a pair of runs and six hits in six innings, as he improved to 5-2 to go along with a 3.38 ERA.
"For them to give me the opportunity to pitch, to start, and just do what I had to do -- I think all around we did a good job," Gonzalez said of the O's.
Gonzalez has never faced the Rangers.
The Rangers have won three of four from the O's this season and are 8-2 against them since the start of last season.
08/20 10:33:23 ET