Déjà Vu: Rangers Advance To ALCS, Defeat Rays 4-3

Matt Harrison starts for the Rangers as Texas looks to advance to the ALCS for the second consecutive year.

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The Texas Rangers Name C.J. Wilson The Starter Of Game 1 of ALCS

Ron Washington has knocked out one of his to-do's prior to the beginning of the American League Championship Series between his Texas Rangers versus either the New York Yankees or the Detroit Tigers.

Who will be the Game 1 starter? Check.

That "check" is 16-game winner C.J. Wilson. The 30-year old lefty has proven to be the Rangers most reliable starting pitcher, and although Wilson struggled in his only pitching appearance in the ALDS, Washington is confidence in his left-handed hurler. For good reason, as Wilson was the starter in Game 1 of the ALCS in 2010 versus the Yankees. Wilson allowed three runs in seven innings, before the Yankees capitalized on poor pitching from the bullpen and took the Game 1 victory. 

Other than naming the Game 1 starter, Washington has made no decisions on the rotation or lineup. The Rangers were off on Wednesday and plan to resume workouts on Thursday. If the Yankees win Game 5 versus the Tigers, the Rangers will work out in Arlington Friday morning before flying out to New York City.

For more insights check out the SBNation Rangers blog at Lone Star Ball.

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Rangers Vs. Rays Final Score: Rangers Close Out ALDS, Defeat Rays 4-3

Adrian Beltre's bat carried the Rangers on Tuesday afternoon, as the Rangers closed out the ALDS against the Rays with a 4-3 victory. 

Beltre socked three homers in Tuesday's win, tying a postseason single game record for home runs in a game. Unfortunately for the Rangers, all three home runs were solo blasts, but it was enough for the Rangers to advance to the ALCS.

Ian Kinsler set the tone immediately, belting a leadoff home run off of Tampa Bay starter Jeremy Hellickson. Beltre would add his first of three home runs in the second inning, giving Texas a 2-0 lead.

Matt Joyce's second inning double made the score 2-1, but Beltre would respond again in the fourth inning, giving Texas a 3-1 lead. Tampa Bay would cut the deficit to 3-2 before Beltre homered yet again in the seventh inning, giving Texas a 4-2 lead.

Matt Harrison was credited with the win, despite pitching only five innings. Harrison pitched well, allowing two runs on five hits, while walking two and striking out nine. Derek Holland came on in relief of Harrison in the sixth inning, pitching one and 1/3 innings, allowing just one hit. 

Ron Washington then went to Matt Adams to get the last two outs of the seventh inning -- even though Adams usually pitches the eighth. Alexi Ogando, who was moved back to the bullpen prior to the ALDS, pitched the eighth inning without surrendering a base runner.

Neftali Feliz earned the save, but allowed the Rays to bring the winning run to the plate in the ninth after issuing a walk and allowing a hit. Feliz, though, induced a groundout from Desmond Jennings to end the game, sending the Rangers back to the ALCS for the second consecutive season.

Texas' opponent in the ALCS is still unknown. Detroit currently leads New York two games to one in the ALDS, with Game 4 coming tonight in Detroit. Should the Tigers close out the Yankees tonight, the Rangers would host games one and two of the ALCS. If the Yankees come back and win the next two games, Texas would travel to the Bronx to take on the Yankees in a rematch of the 2010 ALCS.

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