Texas (65-68) at Kansas City (56-76)

Light Rain Currently: Kansas City, MO
Temp: 36° F
  • Game info: 8:10 pm EDT Wed Aug 27, 2008
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The Texas Rangers probably wish they could play the Kansas City Royals more often this season.

The Rangers look to complete their franchise’s first road sweep of the Royals when they conclude a three-game series on Wednesday at Kauffman Stadium.

Texas (65-68) improved to 6-2 against Kansas City (56-76) this season after a 2-1 victory on Tuesday. The Rangers, who have won four of five on the road against the Royals this year, will now look to complete their first-ever sweep in Kansas City.

They haven’t swept a three-game road series against any opponent since May 2-4, 2005, at Oakland.

The Rangers, seeking their third strong start of this series, will turn to rookie Matt Harrison (5-3, 6.27 ERA) for the finale.

After starter Scott Feldman allowed two earned runs over seven innings of Monday’s 9-4 win, Millwood pitched his second straight complete game on Tuesday, scattering nine hits to pick up a Rangers offense that went 1-for-15 with runners in scoring position.

Both Texas runs were unearned as the Royals’ Mike Aviles and Miguel Olivo each committed an error.

“You’ve got to win anyway you can,” said Rangers manager Ron Washington, whose team had lost 14 of 17 before this series. “I’m just glad it wasn’t us making them (errors).”

Harrison will need a better effort Wednesday to earn a win. The 23-year-old left-hander had his three-game winning streak snapped Friday in a loss to the Indians. Harrison, who had posted a 3.72 ERA over his three previous starts, lasted only 3 2-3 innings against Cleveland, allowing five runs and seven hits en route to a 7-5 defeat.

Harrison has never faced Kansas City.

The Royals, meanwhile, have lost none of their last 10 games, 16 of 19, and seven consecutive series.

Brian Bannister (7-13, 5.89) takes the mound for Kansas City in the finale, trying to break out of a dismal stretch

Bannister has lost his last four starts and seven straight decisions since beating Colorado on June 23. His last win against an AL opponent came back on June 1 against the Indians.

In his last 10 starts, Bannister has an 8.70 ERA. After a horrendous one-inning, 10-run outing in a loss to the Yankees on Aug. 17, Bannister bounced back somewhat against Detroit on Friday, allowing four runs and five hits over eight innings of a 4-3 loss.

“Compared to Banny’s recent outings, this was a major upgrade,” manger Trey Hillman told the Royals’ official Web site.

Bannister is 0-1 with a 9.90 ERA in two starts against the Rangers this season.

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Starting Pitchers

M. Harrison Phi vs. B. Bannister KC
9-3 Record 9-16
5.49 ERA 5.76
42 K 113
31 BB 58
1.57 WHIP 1.49


Wednesday, Aug 27