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Texas Rangers fall to Tampa Rays, Joe Saunders injured by line drive

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The Texas Rangers pitching staff has been wrought with injuries heading into the season and that might have lost another one in their April 4 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays. MLB.com reports that Joe Saunders had to leave the game in the third inning after a line drive hit him in the ankle.

Before the Joe Saunders injury, he gave up six hits, three walks, one hit batter and four earned runs in 3.2 innings. By the time he left the game, Texas was down 5-0. Daniel McClutchen came in a bit earlier than expected and gave up three runs in the fifth inning before Texas finally stopped the bleeding.

Pedro Figueroa and Alexi Ogando only allowed one hit and one walk over the last two innings.

The big problem in this game was that the Rangers offense couldn't get anything going in the game to help offset the pitching mishaps. Shin-Soo Choo went hitless to lower his batting average to a .214. The star of the season so far, Adrian Beltre, was walked twice but never scored and finished hitless as well.

Alex Rios went one for three before leaving the game. The only run came after Elvis Andrus got on base with a double in the top of the eighth and Prince Fielder hit a sacrifice to bring him home.

Defense was also a problem for the Rangers. The Rangers committed four errors, with Andrus logging two of them himself, while Fielder and Beltre's errors in the fifth is why Tampa was still alive when Ryan Hanigan came up to hit the three run homer.

The Texas Rangers and Tampa Bay Rays play the second game of the series on Saturday, April 5, with first pitch scheduled for 7:10 p.m. EST.

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