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Rangers Look To Sweep A's, Face Off Against Rich Harden

The Texas Rangers look to sweep away the Oakland Athletics on Sunday, a day before they begin a pivotal series with the Los Angeles Angels

Former Rangers pitcher Rich Harden stands between Texas and a three-game sweep of the A's. Harden pitched for the Rangers in 2010, but was extremely ineffective in his 92 innings, which spanned 18 starts and two relief appearances. Harden posted a 5.58 ERA and 1.66 WHIP as a Ranger - both good for career worsts. 

This year, though, Harden has pitched well in limited time with Oakland. Through seven starts, Harden owns a 1.17 WHIP to go along with 45 strikeouts in 42 innings. Opponents are currently hitting .219 off of Harden.

Matt Harrison will start for Texas as they aim to sweep Billy Beane's club. On the year, Harrison is 10-8 with a 3.06 ERA and 1.25 WHIP while holding opponents to a .254 average. Harrison picked up a win in his last outing against the Mariners on August 8, when he pitched seven innings while striking out six, walking none and giving up two earned runs. 

A win on Sunday would guarantee that the Rangers hold at least a three game lead headed into their series with the second place Angels. Dan Haren starts for the Angels today in Toronto as they finish up their series against the Blue Jays.

First pitch is scheduled for 3:05 p.m. CDT, 1:05 locally at the O.co Coliseum. 

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.