On Deck: Oakland Athletics

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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 2015 season. 

The Opponent: The A's have lost two straight games at Houston and now host a Rangers team looking to hold on to the division lead with two weeks left to play.

Past 2015 Meetings: The Rangers have guaranteed themselves a season series loss to the last-place A's, having won just 6 of their 16 meetings so far with three more to go.

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Pitching Matchups: Tuesday — Martin Perez (3-5, 4.96 ERA) vs. Sean Nolin (1-1, 3.24); Wednesday — Colby Lewis (16-8, 4.41) vs. Felix Doubront (2-1, 5.05); Thursday — Yovani Gallardo (12-11, 3.41) vs. TBD.

What's Hot: Shin-Soo Choo is batting .520 with a .636 on-base percentage in the last seven games, continuing his tremendous two-month tear since the all-star break. Adrian Beltre has joined in on the fun, hitting .500 with four doubles and seven RBIs in the last seven games. Prince Fielder is hitting .308 with three homers and a team-high nine RBIs in that time. A couple of weeks ago when Colby Lewis faced the A's, he took a perfect game into the eighth inning and tossed a complete-game shutout.

A's outfielder Danny Valencia is hitting .350 with two homers and three RBIs in his last five games. , while former Ranger Jake Smolinski has three homers in his last six games.

What's Not: Mitch Moreland is batting .185 over his last seven games, but has seen four of his five hits in that time go for extra bases (one double and three homers) and he's driven in eight runs in that time. Elvis Andrus is hitting .222 over the last seven games.

Josh Reddick has three homers in his last six games, but he has just one other hit in that time, good for a .167 average. DH Billy Butler has eight RBIs in his last seven games, but he's sporting just a .233 batting average in that time.

Familiar Faces: A's third base coach Ron Washington, of course, is Texas' all-time leader in managerial wins and took the Rangers to back-to-back World Series in 2010 and 2011 before unexpectedly resigning last September. Former Ranger Jake Smolinski is currently getting quite a bit of playing time with Oakland since being claimed off waivers from Texas.

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