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LHP Martin Perez (3-2, 3.00) returns to the mound Sunday to face Baltimore a second time this season. He earned the victory in the Rangers' 8-4 win on July 9 -- his most recent outing. He worked six innings and allowed six hits and four runs, though only two were earned, with a walk and four strikeouts. The 22-year-old lefty is 3-1 with a 2.64 ERA in five starts since being recalled from Triple-A Round Rock on June 22.
1B Mitch Moreland no doubt hopes a late-inning, run-scoring single will be the impetus for a good run. After Saturday, he is 16-for-80 (.200) since coming off the disabled list on June 21. "He's trying to get comfortable and using the whole field," manager Ron Washington said. "He's back to using one side of the field. If he gets back to using the whole field, I think everything will start falling into place."
RHP Yu Darvish will make his first start after the All-Star break on Monday against the Yankees, the same day he is eligible to come off the 15-day disabled list. Darvish landed there on July 11 (retroactive to July 7) because of a strained muscle in his back. Darvish is 8-4 with a 3.02 ERA.
RF Nelson Cruz returned to the lineup after missing Friday's game with a migraine headache, a first-time affliction for the All-Star slugger. In 40 games against Baltimore, Cruz was hitting .353 with six home runs and 31 RBIs. In Game 41, he went 1-for-5 with a strikeout. The Rangers' slugger was in a groove before the All-Star break, hitting .333 with two home runs five doubles and 11 RBIs.
RHP Ross Wolf gave up seven runs on nine hits in two innings on Saturday. Wolf is 1-3 and his ERA resembled a good day on the stock market, shooting up almost two runs, from 2.14 to 4.06. The Rangers had hoped to have a deal with the Cubs completed so Matt Garza could have started on Saturday night, but the sides reportedly remained apart. "They jumped on him early," manager Ron Washington said of Wolf. "He made good pitches down; they hit. He made pitches up; they hit it. That's about it."
RHP Alexi Ogando threw about 50 pitches in a bullpen session on Saturday, boosting the team's expectations that he will return Tuesday for a start opposite Phil Hughes and the New York Yankees. Ogando has been on the disabled list with shoulder inflammation. In a rehabilitation start last week with Triple-A Round Rock, Ogando threw 80 pitches and allowed two runs in seven innings. "He threw the ball well," manager Ron Washington said. "He established his fastball and minimized his pitches. He looked good."