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Texas Rangers vs. Oakland Athletics Free Pick - 9/13/13

Oakland Athletics (85-61) at Texas Rangers (81-64)

MLB Baseball: Friday, September 13, 2013 at 8:05 pm (Rangers Ballpark)

Daniel Straily (R) (9-7) (4.154) vs. Derek Holland (L) (9-8) (3.168)

The Line: Texas Rangers -129 / Oakland Athletics +119 --- Over/Under: 9 See the Latest Odds

TV: CSN-California, TXA21

The Texas Rangers host the Oakland Athletics with the top spot in the American League West up for grabs.

Oakland has been building some momentum the past several weeks, with wins in eight of eleven following an 8-2 decision at Minnesota on Thursday. Both the bats and arms have been strong in this span and both continued to be on the same page Thursday. Starter AJ Griffin was at his best with a lone run given up on two hits over seven frames for win number 14. Josh Reddick paced the A's attack with a homer and three RBI's, while Yoenis Cespedes knocked in two more. Oakland opens the series with Daniel Straily on the mound versus Texas. Straily has won three in a row with a sparkling 1.50 ERA, while overall he is 9-7 with a 4.15 ERA over 24 starts.

Texas Rangers vs. Oakland Athletics Free Pick - 9/13/13

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The Rangers are not playing well and it couldn't be happening at a worse time, with Oakland racking up the wins. The result has seen Texas fall to second in the American League West at 3.5 games back after losing eight of ten. In this stretch, the team hasn't gotten enough pitching and scoring, with the work on the mound to blame for Wednesday's 7-5 defeat to the visiting Pirates. Matt Garza gave up three runs through four frames with three of five relievers gave up the rest. The offense was shutout for five innings before coming to life with Elvis Andrus posting two hits and driving in three runs. Texas sends left hander Derek Holland to the bump in game number one against Oakland. Holland has dropped two straight with seven runs allowed on 13 hits in 10.1 innings pitched.

Texas has the pitching advantage, although Strailey has been red hot so he is capable of winning here and does have the hot Oakland bats behind him. This still feels wrong to me, but I'll back him at plus money...

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