Rangers-Athletics Preview

The Texas Rangers' Yu Darvish and Oakland Athletics' Tommy Milone have both won four straight decisions as they get ready to meet.

The problem is that neither has had much success against the other's club.

These surging starters will be out to try to make it five wins in a row Tuesday night in the middle game of this series in Oakland.

Runs could come at a premium in this contest since Darvish (7-2, 2.11 ERA) has posted a 1.74 ERA in winning a career-best four straight starts while Milone (4-3, 3.47) has gone 4-0 with a 2.00 ERA in his last seven, with the Athletics (42-28) capturing his last five outings.

Both pitchers, however, may find it difficult against the respective lineups they face.

Darvish's problems against Oakland are well documented. He's 0-7 with a 5.32 ERA in his last eight starts against the Athletics, going 0-1 with a 6.75 ERA in two this year with Coco Crisp 4 for 5 against him and John Jaso 3 for 6.

Crisp and Jaso are each 7 for 19 overall versus the right-hander. Brandon Moss is 7 for 20 with four homers and Alberto Callaspo is 7 for 23 while Darvish has limited Yoenis Cespedes to three hits in 14 at-bats with nine strikeouts.

Darvish's 4.73 ERA against Oakland is his second-worst against any club.

Milone can relate since he is 1-4 with a 4.97 ERA in seven career starts against the Rangers (35-35). He'll be particularly wary of Adrian Beltre (7 for 17 against him) and Elvis Andrus (8 for 21).

The left-hander, who is 2-0 with a 1.93 ERA in five home starts, gave up one run over 6 2-3 innings Wednesday to earn a 7-1 road victory over the Los Angeles Angels.

Darvish was outstanding that same night, striking out 10 in a six-hitter in his first career complete game, a 6-0 home victory over Miami. He's 4-0 with a 2.10 ERA in five road starts but 0-2 with a 7.71 ERA in three in his career in Oakland.

A well-pitched game would be in contrast to the Rangers' 14-8 victory Monday in which the teams combined for six homers. Texas went deep four times, with two by Donnie Murphy and one apiece by former Oakland outfielder Michael Choice and Robinson Chirinos.

The Rangers matched their highest scoring effort of the season. Murphy, Chirinos and Beltre each had three RBIs.

''We needed everything we put on the board,'' manager Ron Washington said. ''They kept fighting back but we didn't stop playing. Tonight it took 14 and we were able to get it.''

Oakland starters had not allowed a homer in seven straight games before Murphy connected off Drew Pomeranz. The A's lead the majors with a 3.02 ERA but that figure is at 6.25 in their last four games.

''For a team that leads the league in pitching and usually holds clubs to under four, we haven't been able to do that (lately),'' manager Bob Melvin said.

Callaspo returned with four hits after missing three games due to paternity leave and Cespedes and Moss each homered for Oakland.

The visiting team has won all seven 2014 meetings, with Texas winning four times.

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