|5:05 PM PT6:05 PM MT7:05 PM CT8:05 PM ET20:05 ET0:05 GMT8:05 5:05 PM MST7:05 PM EST7:35 PM VEN4:05 UAE (+1)7:05 PM CT, April 20, 2017
Globe Life Park in Arlington, Arlington, Texas Attendance: 26,898
Struggling Rangers open series at home vs. Royals
Kansas City Royals at Texas Rangers
- The Texas Rangers went 6-1 (.857) against the Kansas City Royals last season, the Rangers' best single-season record against the Royals all-time.
- Andrew Cashner is 0-2 with a 2.70 ERA in two career starts against the Royals. He also received a total of zero runs of support in those two starts.
- Elvis Andrus has recorded a .316 average and .852 OPS in the month of April over the last two seasons after registering a .250 average and .646 OPS in April between 2009-2015.
- Danny Duffy boasts a 3.23 ERA since the beginning of the 2013 season, the third lowest in the American League among left-handed pitchers with at least 400 innings pitched over that time frame.
- Lorenzo Cain is one of three players in the majors hitting at least .300 (.301) with 70+ stolen bases (75) since the beginning of the 2014 season (also Jose Altuve and Dee Gordon).
- The Royals are hitting .160 with runners in scoring position this season, the lowest mark in the majors and the lowest by Kansas City through the team's first 14 games since hitting .151 with runners in scoring position through its first 14 games in 1992.
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ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Texas Rangers could use the kind of home cooking that right-hander Andrew Cashner has to offer when they open a series against the Kansas City Royals on Thursday at Globe Life Park.
Maybe that's all they need after a disastrous start that has the club at 5-10, its worst start since 2002.
Despite the record, Cashner (0-1, 5.06 ERA) has plenty to be excited about as the Texas native and former TCU standout will make his first home start for the Rangers, who signed him in the offseason.
"I'm excited," Cashner said. "I'm going to have a lot of family and friends there. It'll definitely be a special moment for me for sure."
While the start will be his first at Globe Life Park, it won't be his first against the Royals. He's 0-2 against the Royals despite a 2.70 ERA. He'll be coming into the start feeling good about his first start of the season despite a 5-0 loss against the Seattle Mariners.
He was charged with three earned runs in 5 1/3 innings after missing the first two weeks with right biceps soreness.
"I think I did a lot of positive things in my first start," Cashner said. "I thought I commanded the ball well. I definitely need to cut down on my walks (three) and work ahead of guys. I thought my changeup was really good the other day, and I'll keep going with that."
Cashner and the Rangers will have their work cut out against Kansas City left-hander Danny Duffy (2-0, 1.80 ERA), who is off to a sterling start and is 14-3 since 2016.
As good a roll as Duffy has been on, that hasn't translated in his outings against the Rangers. In four starts against Texas, he's 1-1 with a 5.31 ERA. The one win came last year as he limited the Rangers to one run on four hits in 6 2/3 innings.
Duffy leads the best rotation in the American League into a series against a Texas team that's struggling offensively, having scored two runs or less in four of its last six games.
"Pitching is contagious, just like hitting is," Duffy said. "It's been fun to watch. I think I've just been trying to follow Vargy (Jason Vargas) and what he's been doing and so on and so forth. Everybody has been doing a great job."
Pitching-wise, everyone has been doing the job for the Royals. That isn't the case offensively as two of the offensive keys are off to terrible starts. Alex Gordon is hitting just .196 and Eric Hosmer .204.
Those two need to get things going if the Royals are to stay competitive in the American League Central.
"It is cycles," Kansas City manager Ned Yost said. "You just have to let them work through it. You know the talent is there. It's always been there. Their track record is what you have to fall back on. Guys go through slumps. It's just inevitable. Everybody is going to go through one or two over the course of the year, hopefully no more. You don't panic. You just keep working through it."
Updated April 20, 2017