August 20 American League probable pitching matchup capsules
Very quietly, Miguel Gonzalez has become arguably the ace of the Baltimore pitching staff. He is 2-0 with a 1.29 ERA in his past three starts but has to face the powerful Rangers offense on Monday night. Bet on Orioles-Rangers and every game at WagerWeb.com.
Kansas City at Tampa Bay – Royals LHP Will Smith (4-4, 5.09) vs. Rays RHP Jeremy Hellickson (7-8, 3.39): Smith has won back-to-back starts against the Orioles and A’s. Since being called up from Triple-A Omaha for the second time, the rookie left-hander owns a 3-2 record and a 3.69 ERA in six starts. … Hellickson pitched well Wednesday afternoon against the Mariners, allowing just one run in the seven innings, but that wasn’t good enough because Felix Hernandez pitched a perfect game against the Rays.
Baltimore at Texas – Orioles RHP Miguel Gonzalez (5-2, 3.38) vs. Rangers RHP Ryan Dempster (6-6, 3.12): Gonzalez beat the Red Sox after allowing two earned runs on six hits and one walk with two strikeouts in six innings Wednesday night. The 28-year-old has turned in quality starts in three consecutive games. … Dempster, who didn’t start Saturday for personal reasons, will get the ball on two extra days of rest. The righty has struggled since coming over to the AL, allowing eight runs in two of three starts, including his last outing against the Yankees.
NY Yankees at Chicago White Sox – Yankees RHP Freddy Garcia (7-5, 4.68) vs. White Sox RHP Gavin Floyd (9-9, 4.43): Garcia is 5-3 with a 3.69 ERA in nine starts since returning to the rotation, giving up more than three runs only once. He’s won his past three starts, and kept Texas in check his last time out, save for two Josh Hamilton homers. … Floyd has thrown quality starts in five of his past six outings to lower his ERA to 4.43 after it was over 5.00 in June. His last one came on the road against the Blue Jays for his first career victory in Toronto and second road win of ’12.
Minnesota at Oakland – Twins LHP Brian Duensing (2-8, 4.69) vs. A’s RHP Brandon McCarthy (6-4, 2.68): Duensing, who had a 3.32 ERA over his previous three starts, simply didn’t have his best stuff against the Tigers on Tuesday. The left-hander went six innings, but he gave up five runs on eight hits and two walks. … McCarthy is winless in two starts since returning from the disabled list. Last time out against the Royals, he allowed a two-out, two-run rally in the seventh inning to pick up his fourth loss of the season.
Cleveland at Seattle – Indians RHP Ubaldo Jimenez (9-12, 5.62) vs. Mariners RHP Kevin Millwood (4-10, 4.28): Jimenez is coming off one of his worst starts of the season. He gave up eight runs in four innings against the Angels on Tuesday. Jimenez is 2-5 with an 8.83 ERA in the second half. He beat Seattle on May 16, allowing three runs in six innings. … Millwood turned in another quality start on Tuesday, although it wasn’t the prettiest outing. Still, Millwood continues to prove his mettle in tough situations, as he stranded six runners in seven innings against the Rays.