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Garza Wins in Rangers Debut, Mariners End Eight-Game Win Streak

After getting traded by the Chicago Cubs (45-54) on Monday, new Texas Rangers (56-45) righty Matt Garza (1-0) made his debut and helped defeat the New York Yankees (53-48), 3-1 on Wednesday.

It was a great outing for Garza in his 7 1/3 innings on the mound. He gave up one unearned run, struck out five and had zero walks.

Matt Garza

Matt Garza

Since June 21, Garza has won his last six starts; he hasn’t allowed more than two runs from any of the outings. Wednesday’s solo run came from an error by the pitcher in the sixth inning.

Garza said after Wednesday’s game via MLB.com, “I’m excited … I couldn’t be happier playing where I am. I love Texas. I don’t mind the heat. It’s awesome. I’ve been traded three times, so I just go out there and do my job and make these guys proud they got me.”

Contributing to the Rangers’ win was designated hitter A.J. Pierzynski. He brought in both runs scored from lefty veteran Yankees pitcher Andy Pettitte (7-8). In the first inning, he hit an RBI single, then in the sixth inning, he smacked home run No. 10 for the season. This broke the 1-1 tie and the Rangers led for the remainder of the game.

In the eighth inning, David Murphy gave his team a safety net when he hit a home run to give the Rangers their final 3-1 lead.

But just as Garza had a good night, Pettitte did too. In his six innings, he allowed two runs, two strikeouts and one walk. This was his best outing in six weeks. According to NBC Sports, back in his June 8 win against the Seattle Mariners (48-53), Pettitte gave up less than four runs.

With the win, the Rangers didn’t gain any ground against the division-leading Oakland A’s (59-42) as they also won on Wednesday against the lowly Houston Astros (34-66), 4-3. The A’s sit three games ahead of the Rangers.

On Thursday, the Rangers will wrap up the four-game series against the Yankees. They’ve won two of three and will put lefty Derek Holland (8-5) on the mound to get the win. He’ll go up against the Yankees righty Hiroki Kuroda (9-6).

In his June 27 game against the Yankees on their field, he threw a two-hitter in the 2-0 victory but playing at home has been a different story: Holland hasn’t won at Rangers Ballpark since May 31 against the Kansas City Royals (47-51).

Lucky for the Rangers, Holland should snap this skid as the team gets another win against the Yankees (-145, 8.5 o/u).

In Other AL West News…

Mariners skipper Eric Wedge, 45, suffered a “very mild stroke” on Monday and had been released from the hospital on Wednesday. He is expected to make a full recovery and will miss the team’s upcoming series against the Minnesota Twins (43-55) and the subsequent road trip against the Boston Red Sox (61-42) and the Baltimore Orioles (57-45).

On Wednesday, the Mariners got spanked by the Cleveland Indians (53-48), 10-1 and snapped their eight-game win streak–the longest one since Aug. 14-22, 2012.

Mariners lefty Joe Saunders (9-9) spent just 4 2/3 innings on the mound. He gave up five earned runs from nine hits while walking three and striking out five.

Joe Saunders

Joe Saunders

He said of Wednesday’s outing via the Associated Press, “I felt like I was all around the plate today. Henry (catcher Henry Blanco) did a good job back there. We just flat-out got out-played, out-pitched, out-hit. Just one of those days.”

For the Indians, lefty Scott Kazmir (6-4) allowed just one hit over his eight innings of pitching. Teammate Michael Bourn hit a grand slam–a first in his career–while Asdrubal Cabrera add two hits (one home run) and Carlos Santana contributed three hits (two RBI doubles).

The Mariners, who sit 11 games behind the A’s, will host the Twins in a four-game series beginning on Thursday.

The home team gets the first win (-176,7.5 o/u).






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