After finishing last in the AL West in each of the previous four seasons, the Texas Rangers are anxious to prove they’re no longer the worst team in one of baseball’s most competitive divisions.
A 5-5 mark against division foes wasn’t a bad way to start.
“We’re not satisfied with it, but coming out of the spring it feels OK,” Rangers manager Buck Showalter said. “We’ve played six with Oakland and four with Anaheim and they’re not going to go away.”
Next up for the Rangers is the opener of a three-game series at the rival Seattle Mariners.
Rogers got the pitching staff back on track after the Rangers gave up 19 runs in the first two games of the series.
The victory wrapped up a 4-3 homestand for the Rangers, who will hit the road for the first time since opening the season by dropping two of three in Oakland.
The Mariners dropped seven of their first eight games to match the worst start in franchise history before salvaging the finale of their three-game series in Anaheim with Thursday’s 7-2 win.
Ryan Franklin pitched eight strong innings and Raul Ibanez drove in a pair of runs as Seattle returned from its six-game road trip with two wins. The Mariners are still seeking their first win at Safeco Field after getting swept to open the season by the Angels.
“We know that we’re disappointing people right now, and no one more than us,” manager Bob Melvin said. “It’s frustrating for everybody. But our fans have a history of being pretty supportive, and we feel like they’re going to help us get out of this thing.”