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Blackley to debut Tuesday vs. former team

8/19/2013

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Travis Blackley has eight major league wins, four of them pitching against the Texas Rangers.

He'll try to win a game for them on Tuesday night. The Rangers will activate Blackley to start against the team that traded him to Texas last week, the Houston Astros.

Blackley, who hails from Australia, got a kick out of being asked what it was going to be like to pitch for the other side, knowing half his wins have come against Texas.

"Where am I going to get them all now?" Blackley said, followed by a hearty laugh. "I've lost some games to them too. I was joking with some of the guys saying it's good to be here where I don't have to face them anymore and I was hearing the same thing from them, 'I don't have to face you anymore.'"

Blackley, acquired from the Astros last week, will be recalled from Triple-A Round Rock and is expected to throw around 65 pitchers. The Rangers will announce a corresponding move Tuesday, which could have the starter that Blackley is replacing, Alexi Ogando, going to the disabled list with right shoulder inflammation.

Blackley, who pitched out of the bullpen for the Astros this season, threw 40 pitches in a start for Triple-A Round Rock on Thursday. He said he's good with 65 pitches with long man Ross Wolf ready to throw two innings behind him if needed.

"Honestly I could probably go out there and throw 100," Blackley said. "I don't know how I would feel the next couple of days. I know I have it in me. Adrenaline takes over and you don't really feel it. I'll just go with whatever they have planned and take it from there and try to keep throwing up zeroes until they're ready to take me out."

The Rangers considered Wolf for the start, but didn't want to risk losing him for three days out of the bullpen if he threw six or seven innings. This way Wolf can throw a few innings if needed Tuesday and only be down for a day.

Blackley, who has also pitched for Seattle, San Francisco and Oakland, came up big for the A's against the Rangers in Game 161 of last season. He allowed a run in six innings in a 6-4 A's victory, pulling Oakland even with Texas in the American League West. The A's won Game 162 the next day to win the division.

Now Blackley gets a chance to reach the postseason with the Rangers.

"I made it one round into the playoff last year," Blackley said. "Maybe I'll get to further this season."