Despite the fact the Texas Rangers won on Sunday against the Los Angeles Angels, one could argue they are not playing very good baseball right now. Before Sunday’s win, they had lost five of their last six games, including three in a row. After a 2-4 west coast road trip, they now trail the Oakland A’s by 1.5 in the division.
The starting pitching hasn’t been very good for Texas as of late. The last seven Rangers losses have gone to the starting pitcher in each game. None of those losses were by rookie Martin Perez. The fact is the regular starting pitchers have not been that good. Derek Holland is winless in his last six games while Yu Darvish hasn’t won a game in almost a month. His last win was against the Houston Astros on August 12.
Darvish will get a chance to break this streak on Monday as he starts against the Pittsburg Pirates. In years past, a matchup against the Pirates might be considered an easy series win but not this year. The Pirates are in the middle of a division chase with the St. Louis Cardinals. Things don’t get any easier after the Pirates’ series, either. Oakland comes to town next weekend for a critical three-game series. It will be the last match up of the year between these two teams. If the Rangers hope to make the playoffs, they must take care of business this week. Darvish, Holland and Matt Garza have to pitch like they are the number one pitchers on the team. If this doesn’t happen, the season will end a lot sooner than expected for the Rangers.