Lynn, Rangers look to seal series win over Dodgers

MLB

Texas ace Lance Lynn will take the mound on Saturday against the visiting Los Angeles Dodgers in an attempt to give the Rangers their first series in three weeks.

Shin-Soo Choo had two hits, two RBIs and two runs as the Rangers earned a 6-2 win over the Dodgers on Friday in the opener of a three-game series at Arlington, Texas. The victory snapped a two-game losing streak for Texas, which earned just its second win in 12 games.

Lynn (4-0, 1.59 ERA) will be making his first start against the Dodgers since 2017 and his second in the past five seasons. He has made seven career starts against Los Angeles and is 3-1 with a 3.69 ERA and a 1.31 WHIP.

Lynn gave up two early runs in his most recent outing, Monday against the visiting Oakland A’s, before settling down to earn a 3-2 win. He has recorded quality starts in six of his seven outings and has surrendered no more than two runs in any of his appearances.

Saturday’s start might be the last for Lynn in a Rangers’ uniform. He is rumored to be one the most likely players to be traded by Texas before Monday’s deadline. Texas sits five games out of a playoff position.

“No team wants to be dismantled as we get going here,” Lynn said, according to MLB.com, after the win over Oakland. “We played well for a stretch, and then we played really bad. We didn’t all come here to lose and not make a run at the playoffs. That’s what we are all about.”

Los Angeles will counter with Ross Stripling (3-1, 5.46 ERA). The right-hander lasted just four innings in his most recent outing, a no-decision on Aug. 23 at home versus the Colorado Rockies, with both the runs he allowed scoring on homers. Stripling has surrendered a major-league-co-leading 10 round-trippers this season.

Plenty of attention this year has been heaped on the Dodgers’ ability to score runs — they lead the majors with 190 runs and 63 homers — but Los Angeles’ bullpen (which was uncharacteristically poor on Friday) also has been a huge factor in building the best record in baseball.

Including an “opener,” the Dodgers used seven relief pitchers to post a 2-0, seven-inning win over San Francisco in the second game of a doubleheader on Thursday.

“There’s some really good arms,” Los Angeles manager Dave Roberts said. “(They’re) just really doing a great job of preparing and getting outs when they’re called upon.”

Left-hander Caleb Ferguson (1-0) might be the biggest surprise of the relief corps. He enters Saturday’s game with 0.66 ERA.

“I know my stuff is way better that day than the hitter — that’s the attitude I roll with,” Ferguson said, according to the Los Angeles Times, after pitching the first inning in Thursday’s second game against San Francisco. “I’m just sticking to all my strengths now. I’m not trying to do something that’s not me out there.”

The Los Angeles relief corps experienced a glitch Friday when lefty Jake McGee (2-1) took the loss after allowing four runs on four hits while registering only one out.

Friday’s loss was the second in four games for Los Angeles (24-10). The Dodgers have 13 wins in their past 16 outings.

–Field Level Media

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