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2023 MLB playoffs Rays vs Rangers preview: Wild Card series pitchers, lineups, stats...

Tampa Bay Rays and Texas Rangers will face off at Tropicana Field. The venue favors Tampa Bay, adding an intriguing twist to the postseason matchup.

Jonathan Aranda #62 of the Tampa Bay Rays celebrates his grand slam with Isaac Paredes #17

The Tampa Bay Rays and the Texas Rangers are set to face off in a matchup that promises a fascinating collision of strengths. However, the venue adds an intriguing twist, as the game takes place at the Tropicana Field, historically favoring Tampa Bay.

2023 MLB playoffs Rays vs Rangers: Wild Card series pitchers

The Rays have boasted an impressive 53-28 home record this year, making them a challenging force when playing in their home ballpark. This is a factor that the Rangers will have to contend with, knowing that they are up against a team with a remarkable home advantage.

Analyzing the batting averages of the Rangers adds another layer of complexity to this matchup. While the Rangers have proven potent against most opponents, they notably struggle when facing the Rays, hitting only .219 against Tampa Bay. This disparity can be attributed to the Rays’ pitching arsenal and depth in their bullpen.

One key figure in the Rays’ pitching lineup is Tyler Glasnow, who can control and disrupt the Rangers’ batting order. A closer look at his performance against the Rangers reveals a strategic approach, particularly when facing Cory Seager, a prominent hitter for the Rangers.

Glasnow tends to start Seager with breaking balls, avoiding fastballs, and pitching away from Seager’s power zone. This tactical approach and Glasnow’s command of breaking pitches make him a force on the mound.

The Rays’ pitching strategy often involves utilizing their deep bullpen, a formula that has proven successful throughout the season. Tampa Bay’s manager, Kevin Cash, possesses multiple options in the bullpen, allowing him to match up effectively against opposing teams. Cash has the tools to craft a winning strategy, whether a right-on-right matchup or a high fastball specialist.

The home-field advantage at Tropicana Field cannot be understated. It provides a distinct pitching edge for the Rays, as evidenced by their impressive home record. Pitching and defense have been pillars of Tampa Bay’s success, making them a tough opponent.

While some Rangers hitters may lack postseason experience, the presence of seasoned players like Marcus Semien and Cory Seager brings a wealth of knowledge and composure to the team. Their expertise is expected to influence the Rangers’ overall performance positively.

Jordan Montgomery will likely start as the pitcher for the Texas Rangers in the wild-card round. Montgomery’s left-handed pitching style is notable for his ability to combine various pitches such as straight, curve, and velocity change. His capability to adjust speeds and prevent batters from scoring makes him a skilled and valuable member of his team’s pitching roster. Unfortunately, due to forearm and shoulder issues, Jon Gray and Max Scherzer are unavailable for Texas. However, both pitchers could return later in the postseason if needed.

The matchup between the Rays’ pitching and the Rangers’ hitting remains a compelling storyline. While many view this contest as a coin flip, the advantage of playing at Tropicana Field may tip the scales in Tampa Bay’s favor.

2023 MLB playoffs Rays vs Rangers lineups

Texas Rangers

  • (2B) Marcus Semien   
  • (SS) Corey Seager    
  • (DH) Mitch Garver    
  • (RF) Adolis García   
  • (1B) Nathaniel Lowe    
  • (3B) Josh Jung   
  • (C)  Jonah Heim    
  • (CF) Leody Taveras    
  • (LF) Robbie Grossman/Evan Carter

Tampa Bay Rays

  • (1B) Yandy Diaz
  • (2B) Brandon Lowe
  • (LF) Randy Arozarena
  • (3B) Isaac Paredes
  • (RF) Josh Lowe
  • (DH) Harold Ramirez
  • (SS) Taylor Walls
  • (CF) Luke Raley
  • (C) Rene Pinto

2023 MLB playoffs Rays vs Rangers stats

Team Stats Overview

Tampa Bay RaysTexas Rangers
wRC+117 (2nd)115 (4th)
BsR15 (1st)-11.1 (26th)
Starter FIP-88 (1st)96 (7th)
Reliever FIP-97 (17th)102 (22nd)
RAA2 (14th)14 (7th)