The Texas Rangers needed only two first-inning runs to take out the San Diego Padres in Monday’s series opener and earn their fourth straight win. The Rangers lead the majors in most hitting categories but are just as capable of winning low-scoring affairs. That’s bad news for the Padres, who don’t do a lot of scoring. San Diego is last in the majors in slugging percentage and has averaged 2.3 runs in dropping three of its last four games.
Josh Hamilton missed the weekend for the Rangers with a stomach virus and did not start on Monday, but he did appear in the ninth inning as a defensive replacement. Hamilton could rejoin the starting lineup on Tuesday. Texas is 10-3 in interleague play and has a chance to pad that record further with two more against the Padres and three with the struggling Colorado Rockies. San Diego is still trying to iron out a rotation that has incurred several injuries but has to be happy with Jason Marquis, who struck out 10 in seven innings on Monday and has been solid in three starts since joining the club.
Rangers Padres Betting
When: 10:05 PM ET, Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Where: Petco Park, San Diego, California
TV: 10:05 p.m. ET, FSSW (Texas), FSSD (San Diego)
PITCHING MATCHUP: Rangers RH Scott Feldman (0-6, 6.50 ERA) vs. Padres RH Edinson Volquez (3-6, 3.70 ERA)
Feldman started out as the long man in the bullpen but has been pushed into the rotation due to injuries to Neftali Feliz and Alexi Ogando. The former 17-game winner has had a tough adjustment, taking the loss in each of his last six starts while posting a 7.36 ERA. Feldman has yet to go more than 5 1/3 innings this season and is 3-6 with a 5.20 ERA in 23 career interleague appearances – 12 starts.
Volquez snapped a five-start winless streak last time out, allowing one run and four hits in 6 1/3 innings to win at Seattle. The right-hander ranks last in the majors among qualifying starters in run support but has hurt himself with a lack of command, averaging 4.0 walks over his last five starts. Volquez, who came up with the Rangers and was sent to Cincinnati in exchange for Hamilton, has never faced his former team.
1. Rangers slugger Mike Napoli went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts on Monday and is 2-for-26 over his last eight games.
2. Texas rookie Leonys Martin recorded his first career stolen base on Monday.
3. The Padres signed Florida high school right-hander Zach Eflin, who was the 33rd overall pick in the draft.