Rangers hitters impressed with A's Straily

ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Texas Rangers have heard their opponents rave many times this season about the pitching of Yu Darvish.

Tuesday night, it was the Rangers hitters’ turn to heap praise on the opposing pitcher after the Oakland Athletics’ 1-0 victory at Rangers Ballpark.

Dan Straily, he of a 1-2 record and a 7.27 ERA coming in, limited the Rangers to two harmless singles in seven innings. Relievers Sean Dolittle and Grant Balfour took it the rest of the way.

Texas finished with three hits and never advanced a runner as far as second base.

“I can only speak for the at-bats I had and what I saw, but it seemed like [Straily] pitched a great game," Rangers designated hitter Lance Berkman said. “That doesn’t mean we should be shut out. But he was up to the task tonight."

On May 15 in Oakland, the Rangers knocked Straily out in the fifth inning, when he walked four and allowed four hits and four earned runs in a 6-2 Texas victory.

“He had better fastball command tonight," Berkman said. “He didn’t miss in the middle of the plate. His misses were on the inside corner."

Mitch Moreland was impressed with Straily’s versatility.

“He was throwing all his pitches in every count," said Moreland, who went 0-for-3 with three strikeouts. “He threw a good game."

David Murphy, who flied out in all three of his plate appearances, said Straily did a good job of getting ahead of hitters.

“Those were good pitches, at the knees and below," Murphy said.

Manager Ron Washington also noted Straily’s improved command of his fastball.

“We just couldn’t put anything together," Washington said. “I give Straily credit. I never doubted that they had pretty good pitching and a tremendous bullpen."

The A’s go for a three-game sweep at 1:05 p.m. Wednesday at Rangers Ballpark.

“Oakland has a tough team,” Berkman said. “They’re going to be around because of their pitching. We definitely have a free-swinging team. We can put a beating on teams, but we can also make quick outs.”