Nathan Karns (1-1, 4.05 ERA) and Yovani Gallardo (2-4, 4.05 ERA) take the hill in the second of a four-game series between the Tampa Bay Rays (15-14) and the Texas Rangers (12-16) at Tropicana Field. The Rangers won the last game 5-4 and Texas leads the series 1-0. Action begins at 7:10 p.m. ET on Friday, May. 8 and can be seen on FSN-SW and SunSports.
Karns pitched 5.0 innings in his most recent start, surrendering zero runs, striking out four and walking one in a 4-2 defeat to the Orioles. Evan Longoria (.284, 16 Rs, 3 HRs, 8 RBIs) had another good game yesterday, going 2 for 3 with three runs, two home runs, and two RBIs. When pitching against the Rays, Gallardo is 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA, 0.71 WHIP, and five strikeouts. Prince Fielder (.342, 11 Rs, 2 HRs, 14 RBIs) went 1 for 5 yesterday with one RBI.
Tampa Bay is a -130 favorite against Texas and the Over/Under (O/U) for this game is sitting at seven runs. The Rays have an overall money line of +289 and a record as the favorite of 5-5. The Rays have seen a decline in scoring as of late, averaging 2.5 runs during the last 10 games compared to their season average of 3.6 runs per game. Tampa Bay is one of the best in the AL in terms of walks, earning an average of 3.5 per game. As for the pitchers, opposing offenses have been stifled by the Rays, who have a team ERA of only 3.42. The Rays are the third-best team in the league at limiting hits and walks to their opponents, recording a WHIP of 1.12 so far this season. Opponents have consistently been struck out by the Rays, who rank third in the AL in strikeouts per game with 8.2.
In games where it is the underdog, Texas has a 10-14 record and an overall money line of -150.
The Rangers have the edge in the season series, 1-0. The Rays have a 12-9 record against right-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Gallardo takes the mound. Karns (RHP) will be on the hill against the Rangers, who have a 7-9 record against right-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - TB, O/U - Over
In their last game, the Rangers won by a margin of one run. The Rays are 4-5 in one-run games. The Rangers have a 4-3 record in close games.
The Rangers are 2-1 in games that go into extra innings. Meanwhile, the Rays are 1-1 in such matchups.
The Rangers are coming into this game after allowing one walk during their last outing. The Rays have a 0-4 record when opponents give up that many walks or fewer.
When they outhit their opponents, the Rangers are 8-2. The Rays have a 12-2 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 24th in runs, Tampa Bay has earned 105 this season. Texas ranks 18th with 114 runs.
Ranking 12th, Texas is in the top half of the league in walks, notching 93 this season. Tampa Bay ranks in the top five at fifth with 99.
The Rays are 9-8 in games where they hit one or more home runs. The Rangers are 8-4 when they hit at least one homer.