This weekend marks the first of two series between the current best two teams in baseball.
Unlike many years past, the Texas Rangers are one of those teams.
This weekend, the Rangers travel to the Trop to take on the Rays in a much-anticipated three-game set between the two best teams in the MLB.
Coming into the series, the Rays sit at 46-19, four games above the Rangers for the best record in all of baseball.
On Thursday, the Rays took down the Twins by a score of 4-2 to extend their winning streak to six games. On the contrary, the Rangers 5 game winning streak came to a close last night after falling 1-0 to the Cardinals.
The pitching matchups for the series are as follows:
- Friday Andrew Heaney (Tex) vs. Tyler Glasnow (TB)
- Saturday Nathan Eovaldi (Tex) vs. Taj Bradley (TB)
- Sunday Martin Perez (Tex) vs. Shane McClanahan (TB)
Despite the notable names on the mound this series, good pitching could be at a premium. The Rangers and the Rays rank 1 and 2 in many of the major offensive categories to start this season.
The major advantage lies within the Rays’ bullpen. The Tampa Bay bullpen is better than the one that the Rangers will run out there, and that could be a problem for Texas if these games come down to the wire.
Overall, I expect this series to be a slugfest with possibly a really well-pitched game from either Nathan Eovaldi or Shane McClanahan thrown in between. For my series prediction, I think Tampa Bay will take this series 2-1. However, expect an immaculate well; played three games from both sides.
With the Rangers gaining much national media attention, look for people to view this series as a measuring stick for Texas.
After this weekend, we’ll know much more about the 2023 Texas Rangers.
It should be a very exciting weekend of baseball in Tampa Bay!!