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Open Thread: Cubs vs. Rangers, Tuesday 6/19, 7:35 CT

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Back in spring training I got into a little dustup with the good folks at the SBNation Kansas City Royals site, Royals Review, because of this diary I posted there, referring to this BCB game recap in which I wrote:

The Royals are a really, really bad team.
Well, the Royals fans didn't take too kindly to that, and after a little back-and-forth I wound up betting one of them who'd have the better record -- Royals or Cubs -- the loser to wear a T-shirt promoting the winner's site. (FWIW, the Cubs currently have a 3.5 game lead in that torrid race, and we thank you, Royals, for beating up on the Cardinals so far this year.)

What on Earth does this have to do with the Texas Rangers? Well, the Rangers have the worst record in baseball at this writing, and they are indeed, a really, really bad team.

Today's Starting Pitchers
Sean Marshall
S. Marshall
Cubs
vs. Robinson Tejeda
R. Tejeda
Rangers
3-2 W-L 5-7
2.12 ERA 6.49
27 SO 50
7 BB 33
3 HR 13
vs. Tex -- vs. Cubs
I wondered why this is so, because the Rangers are only one behind the AL lead in HR with 82, have good power at unconventional positions (Ian Kinsler, 2B, 11 HR), and are sixth in the AL in runs scored, only six behind the powerful Red Sox.

Look at the pitcher box and you'll get the idea. Robinson Tejeda, who threw a nice game vs. the Cubs on August 3, 2005 as a Phillies rookie, has been brutally bad this year. So has the entire Rangers pitching staff, which is 13th in the AL with a 5.48 ERA; has allowed the highest opponents' OBA in the major leagues (.362), the second-most runs (405, by comparison the Cub staff has allowed 286) and the third-most home runs (84).

Even an offense as run-challenged as the Cubs' has been this year ought to be licking their collective chops at facing Tejeda (6.49 ERA), Kameron Loe (6.56) and Vicente Padilla (another Philly discard, 6.57) in these three games. Go get 'em! Among the culprits, incidentally, is Scott Eyre's brother Willie, who has one of the better ERA's on the Rangers at 3.03.

And please head on over to Lone Star Ball, the SBNation Rangers site, for their perspective. Be nice!

Notice I haven't mentioned a certain player who used to be a Cub. I'm sure that'll get enough attention elsewhere. I mean, Kenny Lofton DID help the Cubs win a division title!

Today's game is cable-only in both home markets, but it will be on EI and at the Mediacenter.

MLB.com Gameday (2007 version)

MLB.com Gameday (2006 version)

Discuss amongst yourselves.