Rangers notes: Rain forces Rangers to double up today

Posted Friday, Apr. 20, 2012  comments  Print Reprints

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DETROIT -- Texas Rangers players were predicting that weather would play a factor during their initial road trip of the season to three northern cities.

They were proven right Friday evening, as rain and deteriorating conditions at Comerica Park led to a postponement of the Rangers' game against Detroit.

The team will play a day-night doubleheader at noon and 6:05 p.m. CDT today. Friday's scheduled starters, Matt Harrison and Rick Porcello, will pitch in Game 1, and Neftali Feliz and Justin Verlander will pitch in Game 2.

"You always hate to miss," manager Ron Washington said. "You've got a game, you want to play."

The postponement will force the Rangers to use Scott Feldman in a spot start Wednesday against New York rather than throw Harrison or Feliz on short rest.

Feldman, who worked in spring training as a starter before moving to the bullpen as the long man, said the he will be ready for the Yankees.

"I'm still stretched out," he said. "However long that they leave me in is what I'll be ready for."

The Rangers will be facing their toughest opposing pitcher this season when Justin Verlander, the reigning MVP and Cy Young winner, takes the ball for the nightcap.

"He's one of the best in the league," second baseman Ian Kinsler said "We need to put up good at-bats one after another to wear him down."

But the Rangers stand as Verlander's toughest test this season, and were a tough test during his remarkable 2011 campaign. They beat him in April, and he was the losing pitcher in Game 1 of the American League Championship Series.

The Rangers scored four runs against him in Game 5, but he was the winning pitcher as the Tigers delayed their elimination for one more game.

"You always want to face those guys," shortstop Elvis Andrus said. "As a hitter, you see it as a challenge to face him."

Still going strong

Josh Hamilton and Nelson Cruz, a pair of key contributors who are no strangers to the disabled list, have started every Rangers game in the outfield so far this season.

That's not a significant stretch, but at the very least Ron Washington wants to get them a day at designated hitter for a quasi-day off.

The problem? Hamilton and Cruz say they don't want one.

Cruz has kept off much of the weight he lost over the off-season because of an illness, and also has been more diligent about keeping his legs strong.

"I work out my legs every other day," he said. "Everything is helping."

Washington said that Kinsler will be the DH in the first game today, and third baseman Adrian Beltre will get a game at DH in Game 2.

The eyes have it

The glasses that Adrian Beltre wore Thursday night during his final two at-bats might not be seen again this season, or they might appear again today.

He said that his eyes get dried out by cool breezes that are blowing in toward home plate. That was the case Thursday, but it was the first time he wore the glasses since joining the Rangers last season.

"Always my eyes get dry, and when I blink, it distracts my swing," he said. "I don't like to wear them, but I didn't have a choice."

Beltre said that the glasses were more common during his one season in Boston in 2010, and he also remembers wearing them some during his time in Seattle.

Jeff Wilson, 817-390-7760

Twitter: @JeffWilson_FWST

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