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September 29, 2012

Saturday's Rangers notes: Who starts Monday?

ARLINGTON -- Martin Perez is scheduled to start for the Texas Rangers on Monday when they open a three-game series at Oakland. But Perez will also be available out of the bullpen today and Sunday, and manager Ron Washington said Monday's starter is to be determined.

"We don't know what's going to happen," Washington said. "We've got to play this string out here and we've got to see what we have available. Perez, right now, is in the bullpen. If we don't use him out of the bullpen, he'll be the guy."

The other candidates would include Scott Feldman, Roy Oswalt and Justin Grimm, but Washington said it's "all hands on deck" the next two games.

Here are a few other pregame notes:

* Nelson Cruz has put together consecutive multi-hit games, and hopes it's the beginning of one of his hot streaks. "It's hard to tell," Cruz said. "Hopefully I can keep it going for the playoffs." Cruz also said that he has no lingering effects after sliding into Erick Aybar on Friday night. Cruz was slow to get up, but the good news was he didn't pull a hamstring or strain a quad.

* Koji Uehara has thrown a club-record eight consecutive appearances without allowing a baserunner, stretching 6 2/3 innings with 12 strikeouts. Uehara said he changed the grip on his split-finger fastball, which has made it more effective, and also isn't pitching with the "fear factor" of getting injured.

* Robbie Ross has struggled since coming off the disabled list, allowing four runs over 3 1/3 innings in four appearances. Ross said he has tried to be "too fine" with his pitches and has been missing his spots. Manager Ron Washington would also like to see Ross come inside on right-handed batters, as they have been sitting on pitches on the outer side of the plate.

* Today's game is still scheduled for 3:05 p.m. and the gates to Rangers Ballpark opened at 1:05 p.m. However, there has been rain coming down for the past couple hours and it could be delayed. They will try and get the game in today, of course, as the teams don't want to play a double header Sunday.

-- Drew Davison


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