LEADING OFF: Harper vs Yanks; Keuchel undefeated; LA at SF
A look at what's happening all around the major leagues today:
In the 11th start of his big league career, Yankees righty Adam Warren (2-2, 4.50 ERA) will try to slow down Nationals slugger Bryce Harper, honored as NL player of the week twice in a row. Harper entered this week hitting .564 with 22 RBIs over his past 11 games - and promptly homered in his first at-bat of Washington's homestand. Warren goes up against Nationals right-hander Jordan Zimmermann (3-2, 3.66).
Houston left-hander Dallas Keuchel (5-0) pitches the finale of a three-game series against Oakland. Keuchel has won a career-high seven straight decisions dating to last season. He is the first Astros starter to begin a season 5-0 since Roger Clemens won his first nine decisions in 2004.
Twins second baseman Brian Dozier takes a 10-game hitting streak into Minnesota's game at Pittsburgh. He extended his streak Tuesday night with a first-inning homer off Pirates lefty Francisco Liriano. Dozier's career-best streak is 11 games late last season.
FINDING HIS FORM
Two-time Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum (3-2, 2.43 ERA) is on the mound for the San Francisco Giants when they host the rival Los Angeles Dodgers. Lincecum struggled a bit in his last start but has improved his ERA by nearly three runs from the same point last year.
BRAVE NEW WORLD
Atlanta right-hander Williams Perez makes his first major league start against Tampa Bay. Perez was hit hard in a debut relief appearance this month, but the Braves believe he has a future in the rotation. In five starts at Triple-A Gwinnett this season, he went 2-0 with a 1.33 ERA.
Two lefties who have received little offensive support hope for a change of fortune when Seattle faces Baltimore at Camden Yards. The Mariners are 0-4 in starts by Roenis Elias, even though he hasn't allowed more than three runs in a game and owns a very respectable 3.24 ERA. He will be opposed by Wei-Yin Chen, who has one win despite carrying a 2.53 ERA and limiting the opposition to a .211 batting average.
Left-hander Carlos Rodon (1-0, 4.96 ERA), rated as the No. 1 prospect in the Chicago White Sox organization, makes his third career start and sixth appearance when he faces Cleveland. Rodon took a no-decision in his most recent start Friday at Oakland, allowing five runs and five hits in four innings while walking six and striking out five. ''He was a bit erratic,'' manager Robin Ventura said. ''There's going to be some of that for a young kid. I think confidence-wise he's got the stuff to come back from that and be fine.'' Chicago selected Rodon third overall in last year's draft out of North Carolina State.
Finally, someone other than an NL West opponent for Colorado Rockies right-hander Eddie Butler. His start against Philadelphia will be just the second time in 11 career outings the young pitcher has faced a team outside the division.