The Rangers and Boston, the two teams with the best records in the American League, face each other in the first game of a three-game series with Derek Holland taking the mound for Texas against Red Sox left-hander Felix Doubront at 7:05 p.m. Friday on FSSW and ESPN-FM 103.3 and 1540-AM.
Holland (1-2, 3.38): Holland makes his sixth start of the season ... He looks for his first win since April 16 at Chicago when he had seven shutout innings ... Since then, Holland has pitched well but has had little run support ... He allowed three earned runs in seven innings in a 7-2 to Minnesota last Saturday ... Holland allowed a run in five innings before giving up a two-out, two-run home to Josh Willingham to fall behind 3-0 in the sixth inning ... It was the second time this season Holland received zero run support .. He has received the third lowest run support average at 2.34, down four runs from last year's average support (6.08) ... Holland is 5-1 with a 3.00 ERA for five career starts against the Red Sox ... It's the eighth lowest ERA of any pitcher with at least five starts against Boston since 2009 ... He is 10-5 with a 4.13 ERA in 20 starts against AL East opponents since 2011 ... He is 0-1 with a 2.40 ERA for two starts in Arlington this season.
Doubront (3-0, 4.24): Doubront makes his fifth start of the season ... He has won three consecutive starts, including a win over Houston in his most recent start Saturday at Fenway Park ... He allowed three runs in 6 2/3 innings tying a season high with eight strikeouts ... Doubront has allowed three earned runs or fewer in each of his starts ... He has allowed one home run but has walked 13 in 23 1/3 innings ... Doubront has allowed 13 earned runs in 11 1/3 innings against the Rangers, his highest ERA vs. any AL club ... He started for the second time in his career against the Rangers on July 23, 2012, allowing six runs in five innings ... Doubront relies on a fastball, sinker and plus change-up.
Hitters: Paul Konerko (3-for-8, 3 RBIs) and Jeff Keppinger (4-for-14, 1 RBI) has had success against Holland. Ian Kinsler (3-for-5, 1 2B) and Nelson Cruz (2-for-4, 1 2B) have the best numbers in limited at-bats against Doubront.