He’ll look to continue hitting homers as the Rangers open a four-game series against the Seattle Mariners—who are starting a critical 11-game road trip— on Thursday at Ameriquest Field.
The Mariners (56-57), who are tied with Texas (57-58) for third place in the AL West, 5 1/2 games behind Oakland, will play the Athletics and Angels following this series as they attempt to stay in the division race.
Texas avoided a three-game sweep and snapped a four-game losing streak by beating Oakland 14-0 on Wednesday, with DeRosa playing a key role. He hit three-run homers in consecutive innings and set a new career high with six RBIs.
“At 7 1/2 back, I don’t want to say you’re done, but we’d have a lot of work to do, and we’ve got to have other teams do some dirty work for us,” said DeRosa, who finished with four hits and has three homers in his last two games. “At 5 1/2 back with 40-something games left, we’ve still got a good chance.”
DeRosa, who has played six different positions this season, entered the year with 25 career homers, but already has 11 this season. He hit a grand slam on Friday against the Angels and has 14 RBIs in his last seven games.
DeRosa has driven in 54 runs this season, and has already surpassed his previous career highs in both homers (six) and RBIs (31).
“It’s nice to be able to explode like that,” DeRosa said.
Texas has won four of the six meetings with Seattle this season, and will turn to Adam Eaton (1-2, 5.23 ERA) on Thursday.
Before the ejection, Eaton had allowed two hits and three runs while retiring two batters.
Eaton is 1-2 with a 4.50 ERA in three career starts against Seattle, but hasn’t faced the Mariners since 2004.
Seattle, which swept the Devil Rays in three games, will look to extend the winning streak with Joel Pineiro (7-9, 5.78) on the mound.
Pineiro lasted only 2 2-3 innings in his last start on Saturday against Cleveland, allowing eight hits and four runs as the Mariners lost 5-2 to Oakland. The right-hander has only one win since June 20.
Pineiro is 6-4 with a 4.78 ERA in 18 career games—13 starts—against the Rangers.