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On Deck will be here all season to provide you with everything you need to know (and a few things you don't) about every Rangers series during the 2014 season.
The Opponent: The Rockies are one of the top offensive teams in baseball with studs like Troy Tulowitzki and the newly crowned star Charlie Blackmon. The Rangers will have to keep up in the heavy-hitting Coors Field setting. They will play two games at Coors Field before coming to Arlington for two in an odd split series.
Past Meetings: The teams last met in Texas in 2012, when the Rangers took two of three games. Back in their last trip to the Rockies, the Rangers lost two of three all the way back in 2006.
Pitching Matchups: Monday — Martin Perez (4-1, 2.95 ERA) vs. Jordan Lyles (3-0, 2.70); Tuesday — Robbie Ross Jr. (1-2, 3.86) vs. Juan Nicasio (3-1, 4.19).
What's Hot: It's finally happening. Over the last six games, Prince Fielder is starting to heat up at the plate and is actually hitting .306 over that span. The power hasn't come yet, but he's getting hits and had two RBI doubles on Sunday. Alex Rios has stayed hot most of the year, and Shin-Soo Choo is still scorching. Another positive sign? Over his last three appearances (three innings), Neal Cotts has allowed one hit and no runs.
Tulowitzki and Blackmon are challenging each other every night for title of best player in the National League so far. Tulowitzki is hitting a robust .619 with three doubles and two homers over the past seven games. Nolan Arenado is hitting .357 over the same time frame, and Corey Dickerson is hitting .412. Nicasio is coming off an outing which saw him toss seven scoreless innings.
What's Not: Both of the Rangers' starters in Denver are coming off their worst outings of the year. Don't worry about Perez, he'll be fine. Ross, on the other hand, could possibly be in trouble. It's not Tanner Scheppers levels yet, don't worry, but you hope Ross can get back on track in his quest to become a full-time starting pitcher. Elvis Andrus, who was dropped to ninth in the order on Sunday came through with a hit — just his second hit in the past week.
Blackmon is still hovering near .400 on the season, but over the past week, he's hitting just .233. After a hot start to the season, Justin Morneau is hitting .269
Familiar Faces: No familiar players on either side here, but the surprise of baseball, Blackmon, was born in Dallas. So there you go.