Rangers-Brewers Preview

Vladimir Guerrero received a rare day off, and the Texas Rangers

can only hope it will serve to prepare the major league’s RBI

leader for a showdown with a pitcher who hasn’t lost since April

10.

Guerrero will likely be back in the lineup Sunday for the

Rangers at Miller Park as they look to end Milwaukee Brewers ace

Yovani Gallardo’s six-game winning streak.

With Texas (34-28) playing the first of three straight series at

NL parks, manager Ron Washington opted to rest Guerrero in a 4-3

win Saturday. Washington wants to limit the amount of innings his

15th-year veteran plays in the outfield.

The 35-year-old slugger has seven of his 54 RBIs in his last

four games, and is hitting .349 (15 for 43) during a 10-game hit

streak. He homered in Friday’s series-opening 6-2 loss.

It could be an historic day for another Texas stalwart, with

third baseman Michael Young two hits away from tying Ivan

Rodriguez’s franchise record of 1,747. Young is batting .388 with

four homers and 18 RBIs in his last 23 games.

“I’m not trying to diminish how special it will be, but I’m

focused on what’s more important team-wise,” Young told the

Rangers’ official website.

None of the Rangers’ regulars have faced Gallardo (6-2, 2.41

ERA). The Brewers ace posted a 6.75 ERA in losing his first two

outings, but has gone 6-0 with a 1.67 ERA in his last 11

starts.

The right-hander has given up one run over his last 23 innings.

He yielded four hits in seven scoreless frames Tuesday, but didn’t

get a decision in a 3-2 home win over the Chicago Cubs.

Gallardo is 1-1 with a 3.60 ERA in four career interleague

outings heading into his first against Texas.

The Rangers bullpen had gone 12 1-3 innings without allowing a

run before Frank Francisco and closer Neftali Perez combined to

give up three Saturday. Perez’s struggles in the ninth inning

forced Washington to use Chris Ray to record the final two outs for

his first save since 2007.

“Last year it was rough, the whole season I had a problem with

mechanics and trying to find my arm slot,” said Ray, who posted a

career-worst 7.27 ERA in 2009. “This year, finally, I can go out

there and pitch without having to think about mechanics.”

Milwaukee (26-36) is looking for more from slugger Prince

Fielder, who is 6 for 35 in his last 11 home games. His lone RBI in

that span came on a solo homer Friday, but he regressed Saturday

with an 0-for-5 showing and three strikeouts.

Texas starter Colby Lewis (5-4, 3.40) has dropped his last four

road starts, and is winless in his last six outings away from

Arlington. He was solid at home Tuesday, lasting seven innings and

giving up one run to earn a 7-1 win over Seattle.

The right-hander has never faced the Brewers, and is 1-2 with a

11.12 ERA in three career interleague starts.