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American League Preview from The Sports Network



Tuesday, July 2nd (All times eastern)

Seattle Mariners (35-47) at Texas Rangers (48-34), 8:05 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: Seattle - Joe Saunders (5-8, 4.98) Texas - Justin Grimm (7-5, 5.56)

(Sports Network) - Joe Saunders will once again try for his first-ever win at Rangers Ballpark on Tuesday when the Seattle Mariners open a three-game set with the Texas Rangers.

In seven career starts in Arlington, Saunders has gone 0-7 with a 9.91 ERA. After cruising through the month of June, the veteran left-hander was hit hard by the Pittsburgh Pirates a week ago. He gave up six runs on six hits, including three home runs, and was chased after only 1 2/3 innings.

Meanwhile, Justin Grimm looks to turn the page to a new month and a fresh start. He pitched to an unsightly 9.00 ERA in five June outings.

"I need to execute pitches," Grimm said. "I've been getting caught up in focusing on this or that, and I need to focus on executing pitches. Just keep it simple."

The right-hander is coming off back-to-back wins after allowing three runs over five innings in each of his last two starts, the latest of which came in Yankee Stadium on Wednesday.

Texas closed out the month of June by winning nine of 11 to overtake Oakland by a half-game in the American League West following Monday's off day. The Rangers took two out of three from Cincinnati over the weekend, including Sunday's 3-2 victory behind 6 2/3 scoreless innings by starter Yu Darvish.

The right-hander allowed only four hits while striking out eight, as he was able to overcome four walks to earn his first win since May 16. Nelson Cruz and Elvis Andrus each drove in a run, and Joe Nathan pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning for his 27th save.

After starting the month of June 4-11, the Rangers are feeling good about the direction they are headed.

"It's the best .500 month ever -- to go from where we were and the stretch we knew we had in front of us, the teams we were playing on the road that are tough places to play and to be able to go in and win," Nathan said. "To be able to grind through and believe we can play better than we have, obviously, and win series against playoff-caliber teams down to the end speaks volume for this clubhouse. Guys knew not to give up and keep pressing on."

Seattle has lost nine of its last 13 as the team embarks on a six-game road trip. The Mariners are trying to get by with a patchwork outfield as Franklin Gutierrez and Michael Morse are on the disabled list, while Dustin Ackley and Michael Saunders are both dealing with finger injuries.

"We just have to stay put with the guys, manager Eric Wedge said.

The M's dropped two of three at home to the Cubs over the weekend. Two of the games went to extra innings, and Chicago took Sunday's rubber match, 7-6.

Texas has won seven of the 10 head-to-head meetings with Seattle so far this season. The Rangers have doubled up the M's in run differential, 51-25.

07/02 10:35:20 ET

  • ACC: North Carolina at Virginia

    Tomorrow at 12:25 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Seattle at Carolina

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Indianapolis at Pittsburgh

    Sunday at 4:25 pm on WRAL-TV

  • Logan Zone with Steve Logan

    Tomorrow at 10:00 am on 99.9 The Fan

  • NFL: Carolina Panthers vs. Seattle Seahawks

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
2nd
EDM 0
CAR 0
 
7th
SFG 2
KAN 3
 
Final
ORL 92
DAL 117
Final
TOR 83
NYK 80
 
Final
MEM 98
MIA 104
 
Final
CHI 112
MIN 113
 
Final
HOU 96
SAN 87
3rd
UTA 68
PHO 68
 
2nd
LAL 26
SAC 22
 
1st
GSW 0
DEN 0
 
1st
LAC 0
POR 0
 
Final
CIN 34
SFLA 17
 
4th
SALABAMA 27
TROY 13
 
2nd
BSU 34
BYU 16
 
1st
CAL 14
OREG 7
 
Final
NJD 2
DAL 3
Final
WIN 2
TAM 4
 
2nd Intermission
COL 3
VAN 2
 
2nd
EDM 0
CAR 0
 
1st
ANA 2
CLB 1