NL: St. Louis (Lohse 16-3) at Atlanta (Medlen 10-1), 5:07 p.m. (TBS)
Braves hope Medlen can extend streak in wild card
ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Braves never seem to lose when Kris Medlen is their starting pitcher.
They sure hope to extend his amazing streak for at least one more game.
The Braves have won 23 consecutive games started by Medlen — a modern big league record. On Friday, he’ll go in the inaugural wild-card playoff against the defending World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals. The winner advances to face NL East champion Washington in the divisional round. The loser is done for the season.
Medlen (10-1, 1.57 ERA) says he doesn’t think much about the streak that began in 2010, except when reminded of it by the media.
The Cardinals will counter with 16-game winner Kyle Lohse. If not for the new postseason format, St. Louis would have been watching from home.
AL: Baltimore (Saunders 9-13 or Johnson 4-0) at Texas (Darvish 16-9), 8:37 p.m. (TBS)
Rangers in unexpected spot vs O’s in AL wild card
ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — After a grinding stretch when the Texas Rangers lost nine of their last 13 games, and the AL West crown in the process, manager Ron Washington gave his players the day off Thursday.
They get a chance to start fresh Friday. One chance — or the season will be over for the two-time defending American League champions long before another World Series.
The Rangers are home Friday night against Baltimore and former manager Buck Showalter in the winner-take-all AL wild card game.
Right-hander Yu Darvish makes his major league postseason debut for Texas against the only AL team he didn’t face his rookie season.
Lefty Joe Saunders, a late-season acquisition by Baltimore, has lost all six of his previous starts at Rangers Ballpark with a 9.38 ERA.
Source: Associated Press