Two of the top pitchers in Texas will find themselves in a duel today, as the Dallas Keuchel-Yu Darvish showdown leads a strong slate of games streaming live on MLB.TV.Keuchel has emerged as a Cy Young Award candidate with an 8-0 start and a 1.81 ERA after a rough 2016
Two of the top pitchers in Texas will find themselves in a duel today, as the Dallas Keuchel-Yu Darvish showdown leads a strong slate of games streaming live on MLB.TV.
Keuchel has emerged as a Cy Young Award candidate with an 8-0 start and a 1.81 ERA after a rough 2016 season in which he put up a 4.55 ERA. He'll now go for an MLB-leading ninth win against the Rangers, a team that gave him plenty of trouble last season.
Keuchel's 5.40 ERA against Texas last season was his worst against any team he made more than one start against. Though it's not like these troubles are new, as he actually gave up a career-high nine earned runs in a start vs. the Rangers in his 2015 Cy Young Award season.
Meanwhile, Darvish, whose 2.97 ERA is on pace to be his best mark since he came in second in the Cy Young Award voting in 2013, will be tasked with stopping an Astros lineup that has been monstrously deep as of late. It will be Darvish's first time seeing them this season.
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Here's what to watch for throughout the day (all times ET):
The wait for 600 continues: [email protected], 10:07 p.m.
All eyes will again be on Jose Pujols as he stands on the precipice of becoming the ninth player in MLB history to hit 600 career home runs.
Pujols will be facing off against a pitcher he's hit two of his 599 career homers in the Twins' Kyle Gibson. He's a career 4-for-16 hitter with two homers, one walk, and four strikeouts against Gibson.
Considering the Twins have Ervin Santana and his 1.75 ERA, and the precocious Jose Berrios on the mound during the weekend, Friday might be Pujols' best chance to make history at home before embarking on a six-game road trip.
Kershaw tries to bounce back: [email protected], 8:10 p.m.
Clayton Kershaw posted his worst start of the season Sunday, lasting a season-low 4 1/3 innings while tying a season-high with four earned runs.
Despite that start, Kershaw remains the Cy Young favorite, though he might have to reassert that after Max Scherzer's 11-strikeout complete game in San Francisco on Wednesday.
The Brewers haven't seen Kershaw since May 2015, a span of time in which nearly their entire lineup has turned over. The notable exception is Ryan Braun, who owns a .303/.324/.424 line with one homer and nine strikeouts against Kershaw in 33 career plate appearances.
Liriano returns to a different team: [email protected], 7:07 p.m.
When Francisco Liriano hit the 10-day disabled list with left shoulder inflammation May 11, it was another blow to a reeling Blue Jays. In Liriano's absence, the Blue Jays have climbed back into respectability going 13-7 to get within two games of .500.
Liriano is expected to be activated and start Friday, with his subpar pre-DL numbers (6.35 ERA, and 23 walks in 28 1/3 innings) being a function of an ailing shoulder that is now healthy.
Liriano and the Jays will face a stiff test in the American League East-leading Yankees and starter Michael Pineda, who holds a 6-2 record with a 3.32 ERA. Pineda also has a 3.11 ERA in 11 career starts against the Jays.
Strasburg marches on: [email protected], 10:05 p.m.
Stephen Strasburg posted a career-high 15 strikeouts Saturday, and will try to follow that up against an A's offense that ranks in the top five in strikeouts with 493 in a bout of interleague action.
Strasburg currently leads in the National League in FIP at 2.46 and will face off against Andrew Triggs, who seems to be enjoying a breakout season as a 28-year-old. Triggs leads all A's starters in ERA with a 2.64 mark and innings pitched with 58.
Jack Baer is a reporter for MLB.com.