The Rangers open up a big three game series against the New York Yankees tonight in the Bronx, as they begin playing a string of sixteen consecutive games. With Texas headed back to Arlington to face Anaheim for four games starting Friday, this is really a make-it-or-break-it stretch for the Rangers. That being said, here's a few Rangers notes floating around before tonight's first pitch:
- Mike Wood will make the start tonight against Andy Pettitte. Robinson Tejeda was originally scheduled to make the start, but he'll go on Wednesday instead to give his sore left hamstring and right elbow an extra day of rest. Pitching coach Mark Connor compares Wood to the 2007 version of John Wasdin - a versatile guy who can pitch in relief or make emergency starts.
- Eric Gagne has been activated from the disabled list, and will be available for tonight's game. Wes Littleton has been optioned back to Oklahoma City. I'd rather see Willie Eyre sent packing, but Eyre seems to be the long man of choice at the moment, and with Benoit still pitching in a setup role I suppose it makes sense to let Littleton get regular innings in AAA.
- Frank Catalanotto says that the acute biceps tendinitis in his right arm is showing significant improvement, and that he hopes to return on May 15th in Tampa Bay.
- Eric Hurley allowed just four singles and a walk in seven shutout innings last night against AA Midland. He's now 5-0 with a 1.47 ERA and 0.98 WHIP in the Texas League. Please, Daniels, don't trade this guy.
MVN's latest power rankings are out, with the Rangers clocking in at #28, a drop of two spots from last week. Hopefully Texas can reverse that trend soon...
Tuesday, May 8th Game Preview
Texas Rangers ( 13-18 ) at New York Yankees ( 14-16 )
Mike Wood ( 0-0, 3.12 ERA ) vs. Andy Pettitte ( 1-1, 3.00 ERA )
6:05 PM CST in New York, New York ( Yankee Stadium )
TV: FSNSW | Radio: KRLD 1080 AM