The Texas Rangers will begin a three-game weekend series on Friday with the Houston Astros. This should be a very good series between divisional rivals, but the Astros do not seem to have to much of a chance against the American League-leading Rangers.
Game one features a pitching matchup of Alexi Ogando for the Rangers and Dallas Keuchel for the Astros. Keuchel is making his first start of the season, and has pitched in six games with a high 4.96 ERA in only 16.1 innings on the year. Ogando, on the other hand, is making his eighth start of the season, and has has thrown 38 innings with a 3.08 ERA — not great, but not bad. I say Ogando leads the Rangers to a game one victory.
Game two will be between Yu Darvish and Erik Bedard. Bedard started the season in the bullpen but has been pretty bad since being moved into the rotation. He has not thrown more than five innings in any of his five starts and he has given up five home runs total in games he started.
Darvish is leading the league in strikeouts this year by a large margin. He has been very good and will continue to show that he should be considered a true ace. Darvish will lead the Rangers to their third straight victory in the second game of this series.
The final game of the series will feature Nick Tepesch vs. Jordan Lyles. Lyles is making just his third start of the season and in his first two outings, he did win a game for the Astros. In a total of 10 innings, he has a 4.50 ERA — the Rangers should hit him hard.
Tepesch has been very good in his rookie season for the Rangers and I think he realizes that he is not going to be competing for his spot in the rotation. Tepesch will pitch well under this new pressure, with Colby Lewis possibly returning in about a month, and lead the Rangers to a third win and a series sweep against the last-place Astros.