Tonight is the rubber match of the second series of the season between the Texas Rangers and the Los Angeles Angels. The pitching matchup is between Rangers number one starter Yu Darvish and Angels rookie Michael Roth who is taking the start in Tommy Hanson’s place.
For the Rangers this is a must win game. The Rangers are only one game ahead of the Oakland Athletics in the division. I know it is April and who is leading the division right now does not seem to matter at all, but I believe in a certain confidence that comes with leading the division. Even this early.
The first reason this is a must win game is Roth is making his first career start. This kid has pitched in four games in his career and has gone a total of five innings. With a 3.60 ERA he hasn’t pitched awful but he hasn’t been that good. The Rangers are definitely hoping that their potent lineup will keep Roth from doubling that total.
My second main reason would be that Darvish is pitching for the Rangers. With this entire pitching staff cut so thin by injuries the Rangers need to win when their horse is on the mound. Darvish has shown this season just how good he has the potential to be, and the Rangers need to take advantage of his start every five days.
Finally both of these lineups are very strong but with Albert Pujols in a lot of pain and Josh Hamilton not playing nearly as well as he was expected to, the Rangers must take advantage.
These teams will play another 13 times this season but the next time they play isn’t until after the all star break. Both teams will have many currently injured players back, but the Angels injuries are much more important to the lineup.
The Rangers wont have another opportunity like this, they need to win this series.