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07/29/09 12:53 AM ET

Feldman: The rock of the rotation

Texas (56-42) vs. Detroit (52-47), 7:05 p.m. CT

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have used 17 different starting pitchers over the past two years. Of those 17, 13 have been on the disabled list at some point in that span.

Of the other four, three are rookies: Tommy Hunter, Derek Holland and Warner Madrigal. The other is Scott Feldman.

Feldman, who pitches on Wednesday against the Tigers, has become the rock of the Rangers' rotation. If he pitches six innings on Wednesday, he'll pass Vicente Padilla for the second most innings by a Rangers pitcher since the start of the 2008 season.

"I don't know ... I just go out and pitch," Feldman said. "Some days ... you know, I don't feel great, but by Day 5, and it's time to pitch, I feel pretty good."

Feldman enters Wednesday's game with a 3.59 ERA, the 14th lowest in the American League. Opponents are hitting .228 off him, the fourth lowest in the league. The only three better are Edwin Jackson (.216), Matt Garza (.222) and Jarrod Washburn (.224).

Feldman, who made three relief appearances early in the season, has held opponents to a .217 batting average in 17 starts. That would be the second lowest in the AL behind Jackson and the eighth lowest by a starter in club history. Nolan Ryan has the three lowest.

Pitching matchup
TEX: RHP Scott Feldman (9-3, 3.59 ERA)
Feldman pitched eight scoreless innings in a 2-0 victory over the Royals on Friday, his longest outing in 42 career Major League starts. He is now 4-1 with a 2.79 ERA in his past six starts and he has a 3.04 ERA in 17 starts this season. He is 3-2 with a 3.72 ERA in 11 games, including nine starts, at home this season. He has a 6.43 ERA in five relief appearances and one start against the Tigers in his career.

DET: RHP Justin Verlander (11-5, 3.12 ERA)
Verlander has led the AL in strikeouts for much of the season, and it isn't really close. He is battling among the AL leaders for wins, despite some of the low-scoring no-decisions and losses he has taken over the past month. The Tigers gave him an early lead in his previous start, and he went the distance with it for a complete-game six hitter, having allowed a lone unearned run. But the road presents a particular test for Verlander, who owns a 4-5 record and 4.76 ERA away from Comerica Park compared with 7-0 and 1.15 at home.

The Rangers have put outfielder Engel Beltre on the disabled list at Class A Bakersfield with a hamate bone fracture in his right hand. David Paisano was promoted from Class A Hickory to replace him. ...Josh Hamilton snapped an 0-for-17 skid with a fifth-inning single on Tuesday. ...Elvis Andrus stole his 20th base on Tuesday. He is the 10th player in Major League history to get 20 steals before his 21st birthday.

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On the Internet
 Gameday Audio
•  Gameday
•  Official game notes

On television

On radio
• 105.3 The Fan, KFLC 1270 (Español)

Up next
• Thursday: Rangers (Derek Holland, 3-6, 6.13) vs. Mariners (Garrett Olson, 3-4, 5.37), 7:05 p.m. CT
• Friday: Rangers (Kevin Millwood, 9-7, 3.39) vs. Mariners (Jason Vargas, 3-4, 4.39), 7:05 p.m. CT
• Saturday: Rangers (Tommy Hunter, 3-1, 2.00) vs. Mariners (Felix Hernandez, 11-4, 2.79), 7:05 p.m. CT

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.