Kansas City (5-4) at Texas (4-5)

Sunny Currently: Arlington, TX
Temp: 73° F
  • Game info: 8:05 pm EDT Fri Apr 17, 2009
  • TV: FSKC, FSSW
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Ian Kinsler has had some big games at the plate against the Kansas City Royals. None of those performances came anywhere close to matching his last effort for the Texas Rangers.

After the game of his career, Kinsler looks to help the Rangers continue their success against the Royals in the opener of a three-game series Friday night.

Kinsler hit for cycle and went 6-for-6 as Texas (4-5) beat Baltimore 19-6 on Wednesday. The 26-year-old second baseman became the first player with both a cycle and six hits in a game since Aug. 12, 1890, when Farmer Weaver did it for the Louisville Colonels.

“That was just a monster game. It’s one thing to hit for the cycle, that’s a once-in-a-lifetime type of game,” Rangers shortstop Michael Young said. “But to add a couple of more hits to it too, it’s an incredible game.”

Kinsler had the fourth cycle in team history while matching club records for hits and runs (five) as Texas snapped a five-game losing streak.

Kinsler helped Texas put up the majors’ highest single-game run total this season. It was the Rangers’ best game at the plate since a 30-3 victory at Baltimore on Aug. 22, 2007.

Texas averaged 6.0 runs en route to going 7-2 against Kansas City (5-4) last season, with Kinsler batting .333 (8-for-24) with two home runs and two doubles in six of those contests. He’s hitting .386 (27-for-70) with six home runs and 20 RBIs in 18 career games versus the Royals.

The Rangers will now face Gil Meche (0-0, 3.21 ERA), who’s posted an 8.53 ERA in losing his last three starts at Texas. The veteran right-hander is 2-6 with an 8.10 ERA in eight starts there all-time.

Overall, Meche is 4-9 with a 6.32 ERA in 15 starts and one relief appearance against Texas.

Meche pitched seven innings in both of his starts this season. Against New York on Sunday, he allowed four runs and six hits while striking out six in a 6-4 Royals victory.

The Rangers will counter with Matt Harrison, who lost his first start of the season, allowing four runs and nine hits while walking five in 5 2-3 innings as Texas fell 4-3 to Detroit on Saturday.

The 23-year-old left-hander earned a win in his only start against Kansas City, giving up two runs and seven hits in 6 2-3 innings of a 3-2 Rangers victory Aug. 27.

He’ll face a Royals team that’s scored 23 runs in the last four games. Kansas City missed a chance to sweep Cleveland in a three-game series, losing the finale 5-4 on Wednesday.

The Royals have won two of their three series.

“I think we’ve just got to stress winning series,” Kansas City first baseman Mike Jacobs told the team’s official Web site, “and the more series you can win, obviously, the better.”

Jacobs is batting .280 (7-for-25) with two home runs, three doubles and four RBIs in his first season with the Royals after being acquired in a trade with Florida on Oct. 30.

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Starting Pitchers

G. Meche KC vs. M. Harrison Tex
6-10 Record 4-5
5.09 ERA 6.11
95 K 34
58 BB 23
1.57 WHIP 1.64

Scoreboard

Friday, Apr 17