TOM STRYKER’S FREE BASEBALL SELECTION MONDAY, AUGUST 21ST
#969 TEXAS with Montgomery (-162) over Arizona with Cecconi at 9:40 PM EST
It’s gut-check time for the Rangers. Off four consecutive losses all in its own backyard, Texas will dig deep and pick up a huge win at Arizona. The Diamondbacks have won five of its last six including two straight at Petco Park over the Padres and they’ll have issues in this interleague battle.
Left-hander Jordan Montgomery will toe the rubber for the visitors. Since coming over from the Cardinals, No. 52 has made three starts for the Rangers and been touched for only five earned runs and 19 hits in 18.0 innings of work. Jordan struck out 20 and walked two on his way to a 2-1 tally with a strong 2.50 ERA. Additionally, with the lights shining, Montgomery pitched well surrendering just 35 earned runs and 96 hits in 98.1 frames. After the math, that adds up to a 6-7 tally with a 3.20 ERA.
Rookie righty Slade Cecconi will pick up the pill for the home squad. With three appearances in the books including two starts, No. 43 was cracked for four earned runs and nine hits in 10.1 innings. Slade fanned seven and issued four free passes on his way to 3.48 ERA. In AAA-Reno this season, Cecconi made 20 starts and was popped for 73 earned runs and 113 hits in 103.0 frames. That equates to a 4-8 mark with a lofty 6.38 ERA.
This is the perfect spot to fade the D’Backs, too. Arizona has fallen in 27 of its last 42 in the second half of the season and 13 of its last 15 in its own backyard fighting an AL West foe. On the other side of the park, Texas has tasted victory in 42 of its last 74 battles when rolling at night.
If the Rangers want to win the AL West, then they better dominate when they own an edge on the mound. That’s the case in this matchup. Take Texas with Montgomery. Thanks and best of luck, Tom.
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