NEW YORK -- The Rangers' playoff platoon at first base is apparently a thing of the past.
Rookie Mitch Moreland will start Game 3 despite left-hander Andy Pettitte pitching for the Yankees. Manager Ron Washington opted for the left-handed-hitting Moreland over struggling righty Jorge Cantu, who is hitless in seven postseason at-bats.
Moreland, who has a five-game postseason hitting streak, was 3-for-4 with a run and RBI in Game 2. He has never faced Pettitte. He hit .200 (4-for-20) against major league lefties this season.
"He's swinging the bat, having good at-bats," Washington said of Moreland. "I just want to keep it going."
Washington said the toughest part of the decision was determining whether Moreland was prepared for hte test of facing "crafty veteran" Pettitte, who holds the major league record with 19 postseason wins. But it's not like Cantu has been hitting lefties (or anybody else). He hit .234 against southpaws this season with only two homers in 141 at-bats.
The Rangers' lineup:
SS Elvis Andrus
LF Nelson Cruz
2B Ian Kinsler
RF Jeff Francouer
1B Mitch Moreland