Tonight in MLB: Rangers aim to end losing streak

Tonight in MLB: Rangers aim to end losing streak
September 17, 2013, 12:30 pm
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Alexi Ogando (6-4, 3.23) starts for the Rangers on Tuesday. (USA Today Images)

Cliff Lee led the Phillies to a 12-2 victory over Florida with both his bat, going 3-for-4 from the plate with four RBIs, and his arm, striking out 14 in eight innings (see story).

Here's a look at notable games around the majors on Tuesday:

Rangers at Rays, 7:10 p.m.

The Texas Rangers are somehow still holding onto an AL wild-card spot despite a seven-game losing streak.

The Tampa Bay Rays can add to the Rangers' woes and bolster their chances of hosting that wild-card contest next month.

These contenders are headed in opposite directions as they continue a four-game set Tuesday night at Tropicana Field.

These clubs began this series tied for the AL's wild-card spots, and Tampa Bay (82-67) won 6-2 on Monday to grab the slot that would give it home-field advantage. The Rays have won four of five following a stretch in which they lost five of six (see full preview).

Padres at Pirates, 7:05 p.m.

The Pittsburgh Pirates were shut down by another strong San Diego Padres pitching performance in Monday's series opener.

They're hoping their own Jeff Locke can return the favor Tuesday night at PNC Park.

Pittsburgh managed just one hit in Monday's 2-0 loss as San Diego's Andrew Cashner worked on a perfect game until Jose Tabata's single in the seventh inning. He was the only runner allowed by Cashner, who needed just 97 pitches to become the first pitcher in club history to face 27 hitters in a nine-inning complete game.

Andrew McCutchen was 0 for 3 and is 1 for 9 with three strikeouts in three contests since an 11-game hitting streak ended.

The Pirates were fortunate to remain in a first-place tie in the NL Central with St. Louis, which suffered a 2-1 loss at Colorado (see full preview).

Indians at Royals, 8:10 p.m.

In the thick of the playoff race, the Kansas City Royals are hoping to get a boost from one of their top pitching prospects.

Yordano Ventura is set to make his major league debut Tuesday night as the Royals continue a crucial three-game home set against the Cleveland Indians.

The highly touted 22-year-old right-hander will replace original scheduled starter Danny Duffy, who is dealing with inflammation in his surgically repaired left elbow. Ventura's repertoire includes an impressive curveball and a fastball that touches triple digits (see full preview).

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