Posted May 04, 2012 on AP on Fox
Since breaking a franchise mark involving series victories, the Texas Rangers have had trouble earning wins consistently. A series with the Cleveland Indians, the potential return of two top hitters to the lineup and another strong outing from Colby Lewis on Friday night might help them get back on track. Texas set a team record by winning its first six series this season but has lost its last two. The Rangers (17-8) have lost four of six games, including their final two in Toronto earlier this week. They allowed a combined 19 runs in those defeats, including a season-worst 11 during Wednesday's series finale. "You're not going to win every series," pitcher Matt Harrison told the team's website. "We know what we have to improve on. ... We'll get our heads right and go out and take it out on Cleveland." Texas has usually done that against the Indians as it's won 11 of 12 at Cleveland and 21 of 25 overall. The Rangers also enter this game tied with Cleveland for the best road record in the majors at 9-3. Having Lewis (3-0, 1.93 ERA) on the mound for the series opener could help Texas add to that mark and its dominance of the Indians. The right-hander has allowed two runs or fewer in each of his five outings this season, and gave up one over six innings during a 7-2 win against Tampa Bay on Saturday. "If we're consistent on the mound, we're going to win ballgames with our lineup," Lewis said. "I just try to go out and throw zeros and keep our team in the game." Adrian Beltre hit a three-run homer during that victory but sat out Wednesday's 11-5 loss due to soreness he blamed on the Rogers Centre turf. Josh Hamilton, the AL's player of the month for April, missed his third straight game because of a sore back, but both players might return Friday. "I hope to have them back in that lineup," manager Ron Washington said. "They're quite important." If they do return, Hamilton and Beltre will try to help their team avoid a third consecutive loss by handing Jeanmar Gomez (1-1, 2.35) his second in as many outings. The Indians right-hander, though, has allowed two runs or fewer in each of his three starts this season and gave up two over six innings during a hard-luck 2-1 defeat to the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday. That outing marked his return from a five-game suspension for intentionally hitting Kansas City's Mike Moustakas during an 11-9 win April 14. While the right-hander will make his first start against Texas, Lewis will try to improve to 3-0 in his career against the Indians (13-10). He's allowed three runs or fewer in each of his last three starts and pitched into the eighth inning during a 5-3 home win Aug. 7. This time, he'll try to contain a lineup that produced 13 runs in back-to-back road wins over the Chicago White Sox after totaling 14 in its previous six games. "(Winning on the road) is very important, especially early in the year because it sets a tone," manager Manny Acta said. Jason Kipnis homered, tripled and drove in a career-high four runs during a 7-5 victory Thursday, improving his average to .444 over the past seven games. Johnny Damon also recorded his first hit with Cleveland. Damon, purchased from the minors Tuesday, served as a designated hitter Thursday while Travis Hafner rested his sore right knee. He might get another day off as Damon is 4 for 13 lifetime against Lewis while Hafner is 1 for 6.

Travis Hafner moves up Cleveland’s all-time home run list

With his two run shot in the ninth inning, Travis Hafner passed Rocky Colavito for ninth place on the Indians’ all-time home run list. Hafner now has 191 career homers for the Indians. (He hit one as a member of the Rangers.) Hafner now has three home runs on the season. He hit 13 in each of the last two seasons. He has 12 RBI on the year and an OPS of .860. The updated list- 1...

How Awesome Was the Crazy Yu Darvish Lover?

This video was posted about a month ago, but it still makes me laugh. You have to love the Yu Darvish phenomenon. I was a doubter, and even though I’m not sold yet, Yu has proven me wrong so far. I do, however, give Yu some credit for dating a Japanese porn star. That’s gotta be fun.

Indians' Hannahan gets homer after replay reversal

Jack Hannahan of the Cleveland Indians has been awarded a home run after umpires reversed a call on instant replay. Hannahan hit a drive down the right-field line that caromed off the wall and back past Texas Rangers right fielder Nelson Cruz. Hannahan made it to third with what appeared to be a stand-up triple. Indians manager Manny Acta came out to argue and plate umpire Dale...

FOX Regional Sports Networks Seeing 20% Increase in Ratings for MLB Over Last Year

Fueled largely by the Texas Rangers, FOX is showing strong ratings for the regional sports networks that they host with increases on 20 percent over last year at this time. Interest in Japanese pitching sensation Yu Darvish has been a large factor in the increases on FOX RSNs. FOX reports that four of his five starts have been on FOX Sports SW and have averaged a 9.1 rating, including...

Indians 6, White Sox 3

Carlos Santana and Travis Hafner homered to lead the Cleveland Indians to a 6-3 win over the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday night. Santana hit his fourth homer of the season, a three-run shot in the fifth inning that landed well behind the Indians' bullpen in right field. Hafner added a two-run shot in the ninth. Jack Hannahan doubled home Michael Brantley with the go-ahead...

Santana, Hafner homer as Tribe top ChiSox

CHICAGO (AP) -- Carlos Santana and Travis Hafner homered to lead the Cleveland Indians to a 6-3 win over the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday night. Santana hit his fourth homer of the season, a three-run shot in the fifth inning that landed well behind the Indians' bullpen in right field. Hafner added a two-run shot in the ninth. Jack Hannahan doubled home Michael Brantley with...

Rangers Minor League Roundup – 5/4

Double-A Frisco third baseman Mike Olt hit a home run and walked twice in the RoughRiders' victory on Friday night. Lone Star Dugout takes a look at all of the day's minor league action in the Texas Rangers' system.

Kipnis powers Indians past White Sox

CHICAGO (AP) -- Jason Kipnis hit a three-run homer and finished with a career-high four RBIs, leading the Cleveland Indians to a 7-5 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Thursday night. Kipnis, a native of suburban Chicago, also tripled in a run, walked and scored twice. Justin Masterson (1-2) picked up his first win of the season, holding the White Sox to three runs over 6 1...

Watching Ubaldo is Fun!

This is getting downright disgraceful. After his last start, I proclaimed to be officially off “the Ubaldo Jimenez will turn it around” bandwagon. Many of you told me that I was hasty and needed to give him more time to find himself. Was last night’s horrific performance where he lasted just four and two-thirds innings while walking six Chicago White Sox, enough for you to...

5/3 Game Recap: Indians 7 - White Sox 5

Player of the Game Jason Kipnis dominated in today's win. Kipnis went 2-3 with a walk. His two hits included an RBI triple in the 3rd inning, scoring Johnny Damon's first run as an Indian. In the 7th inning, Kipnis lined a 3-run home run over the right field wall. Kipnis scored 2 runs today and knocked in 4. His effort today amounted for the highest Player of the Game...

Low-Level Highlight: Francisco Lindor

There have been many shortstops that get talked about as prospects in the minor leagues, but the majority of them end up being utility players or second-division starters. That's just what happens when you play the most demanding position on the infield, as the tools to succeed at the Major League level are higher than perhaps any other position. But for the Cleveland Indians...

5/4 Game Recap: Rangers 3 - Indians 6

Player of the Game Shin-Soo Choo won his first Player of the Game this year as he hit his first home run of the season. His score of 4.28 came mostly from his 2 run home run that showed that Colby Lewis is not unhittable. With another positive outing, Jeanmar Gomez now has a streak of 5 straight positive games (more importantly every game he's played in this year). He is...
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