The Rangers and Milwaukee Brewers play a quick two-game series Tuesday and Wednesday at Miller Park. Justin Grimm and Derek Holland will start for the Rangers.
|Ron Washington joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett live from Milwaukee for his weekly visit and discusses Nick Tepesch, the Rangers' rotation, interleague play and more. |
Home struggles: The Brewers have failed to take advantage of a favorable early season schedule. They've played almost two thirds of their games at home and are 9-10 at Miller Park. They had an eight-game home winning streak in April but have lost five straight at home. Milwaukee is 14-16 overall and has lost five games in a row, dropping from second place and just a half game out of first place to fourth place and 2 1/2 games behind St. Louis, Cincinnati and Pittsburgh, who are in a virtual first-place tie in the National League Central.
Axford's struggles: Brewer reliever John Axford has lost his job as the club's closer and there are questions about whether he should be sent down to the minors. The Brewers want Axford to work through his struggles at the major league level. He has allowed four earned runs in last last three outings, including a run while getting one out in Sunday's series finale against St. Louis. Axford has been getting hammered -- opponents are batting .352 with six home runs against him.
Braun at it again: Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun takes an eight-game hitting streak into Tuesday's game. The NL's 2011 Most Valuable Player is batting .424 during the streak but has only two RBIs. Braun is seventh in the NL with seven home runs and 10th with 23 RBIs. He leads the NL with five outfield assists.
Young star on rise: Brewers shortstop Jean Segura is making the Los Angeles Angels regret the trade that sent him to Milwaukee for Zack Greinke, who played for the Angels for two months and no playoff games last year. Segura, 23, was the Brewers' Player of the Month for April with a .367 batting average and three home runs, nine RBIs and seven stolen bases. He's tied for the NL lead in triples.
Old AL rivals: The Rangers play at Miller Park for the first time since 2010 when they won two out of three games from the Brewers. The Rangers are 77-77 all-time in Milwaukee, with a 75-76 record at old County Stadium. The Brewers have three former Rangers coaches -- bench coach Jerry Narron, Texas' manager from 2001-02, hitting Johnny Narron, who was with the Rangers as Josh Hamilton's mentor, and bullpen coach Lee Tunnell, a former Rangers minor league coach. The Brewers' general manager, Doug Melvin, was the Rangers' GM when they made playoff appearances in 1996 and 1998-99.
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
Play Podcast Rangers GM Jon Daniels joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to tackle the tough questions after his team failed to advance to the playoffs.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss having Nelson Cruz back in the lineup and how the Rangers are feeling heading into their wild-card play-in game against the Rays.
Play Podcast ESPN Insider and senior MLB analyst Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the wild-card race and the Rangers' chances of making the playoffs.
Play Podcast Chuck Cooperstein joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why he feels Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish isn't an ace.
Play Podcast Elvis Andrus joins Galloway and Company to discuss the Rangers' stretch run and the morale level in their clubhouse.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss the latest Rangers news, including the team's struggles, Ron Washington's job security and a rumored trade with the Braves.
Play Podcast Ron Washington joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss the Rangers' dismal September, who's to blame for their September struggles and his status as the team's manager.
Play Podcast Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss how some people are calling for the Rangers to fire manager Ron Washington.