Harrison arrives in style vs. All-Star
Rookie outduels Saunders in debut win; Kinsler's streak hits 20
ARLINGTON -- The main topic of discussion before the game was the uncertainty surrounding the Rangers rotation, but manager Ron Washington tried not to fret too much about it."If this kid keeps us in the game, we're going to win," Washington said in his office 3 1/2 hours before the "kid" had thrown his first pitch. The kid was left-hander Matt Harrison, who was making his Major League debut against Angels All-Star left-hander Joe Saunders, and Washington ended up right in his assessment. Harrison more than kept the Rangers in the game. Harrison ended up winning, pitching the Rangers to a 3-2 victory on Tuesday night at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. "Outstanding," Washington said afterward. "I thought he was outstanding." Ian Kinsler extended his hitting streak to 20 games with a sixth-inning double, and Josh Hamilton had two more RBIs to give him 87 on the season. But the story of the night was Harrison and what he did for the Rangers' banged up rotation. "Huge ... huge," outfielder Marlon Byrd said. "In the Major Leagues it's all about hitting your spots, and he put on a clinic tonight." Harrison didn't even arrive at the Ballpark until 3 p.m. and had to endure a 56-minute rain delay before throwing his first pitch. He was also going up against a first-place team with the best road record in the Major Leagues. None of that fazed him once the rain pushed off to East Texas. "That was special," Kinsler said. "Especially coming against one of the best teams in baseball. He hung in there with an All-Star through seven innings in his Major League debut."
|"It's everything I ever worked for in my life and coming up through the Minor Leagues."|
|-- Matt Harrison|
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.