MLB – Texas Rangers at Baltimore Orioles 

Orioles vs Texas RangersTexas Rangers vs OriolesTexas Rangers at Baltimore Orioles to wrap up a three game series on Thursday

The Texas Rangers finish off a three game series against the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday night. Both teams need the win as they hold shrinking leads in their respective divisions. The ballgame between the Texas Rangers and Baltimore Orioles will take place on Thursday, August 4, 2016, at 7:05 p.m. ET at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. The ballgame will be broadcast on FOX Sports Southwest and MASN.

The Texas Rangers have been just average since the All-Star break, and are barely over .500 on the road. The Texas Rangers will be sending the 28-year old right-hander A.J. Griffin to the mound for this ballgame. Griffin has been healthy and has a 4-1 record with a 3.99 ERA in his 13 starts. He missed the  last two seasons due to serious elbow issues, but he has recovered well. He is giving up just 7.6 hits per nine innings and 10 home runs in 67 2/3 innings. He is also giving up 3.7 walks per nine innings. The most innings he has thrown has been five and two-thirds, so the rangers will need its bullpen to cover the rest of the ballgame. The Texas bullpen has the worst ERA in the American League which may be an issue.

The Baltimore Orioles is the best baseball team at home with a 37-16 record. On the road the Orioles are seven games under-.500. The Orioles have plenty of batting power as they have 154 home runs, which leads all of baseball. The Baltimore Orioles weakness comes in the form of starting pitching. The Orioles will probably start pitcher Wade Miley on Thursday. Miley has a 7-8 record with a 4.98 ERA. He has been allowing to many home runs at 1.4 per nine innings. He has pitched better as of late, giving up six runs in his last three games. The Orioles will back him up, because they have the best bullpen in the American League with a 3.06 ERA. Best Sports Site Blog gives the edge to Baltimore because they are good at home and the Rangers are just mediocre on the road.

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MLB: Texas Rangers at Toronto Blue Jays Game 5 ALDS

blue jays-rangers

MLB: Blue Jays can Advance to ALCS with Win at Home

Stroman, Hamels Reunite for ALDS Game 5

The Blue Jays return home to Toronto and will have the home town fans behind them for this must-win Game 5. They lost the first two games of the ALDS at home, but the Toronto Blue Jays went to Arlington and evened their series with the Texas Rangers at two games apiece. The Blue Jays return to the former SkyDome for Wednesday’s Game 5 at 4:07 PM ET to see who advances to the Championship Series.

It’ll be the same two starting pitchers from Game 2 in Toronto, which the Rangers won 6-4. Marcus Stroman (3.54 FIP) will take the mound for the Blue Jays, and Cole Hamels (3.47 FIP) will pitch for the Rangers.

It took some creative managing to put the Jays in this position. David Price (2.78 FIP) seems to struggle against the Rangers, who have a combined .739 OPS versus the Cy Young-winning lefty. As a result, Toronto used Price in a relief role on Wednesday, starting RA Dickey in an 8-4 win.

That sets up future ace Marcus Stroman (3.54 FIP) to start Game 5 at home. Since returning from an ACL, he has won all four starts in the regular season with an ERA of 1.67 as the Blue Jays rolled to the AL East crown. The Jays won all four of those starts before losing 6-4 in Game 2 as home favorites. The winner that day, Cole Hamels (3.47 FIP), is expected to start Game 5. Texas was 10-2 behind Hamels during the regular season for 7.60 units in earnings.

Cole Hamels was brought from Philadelphia for games like this, which will be his 15th appearance in the postseason. The 31-year-old southpaw has a World Series MVP and an NLCS MVP in his back pocket from 2008. Toronto’s 24-year-old hurler Marcus Stroman held his own with Hamels in Game 2. The Blue Jays have so much confidence in Stroman that they brought David Price out of the bullpen in  Game 4 to win in Texas. It’ll be important for the Rangers to get on the board early to have a chance as they’ll need to take the fans out of the game.

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