After knocking out the Tampa Bay Rays on the road in the AL Wild Card Round, the Texas Rangers now must travel to Baltimore to face another AL East opponent -- the Orioles. Baltimore earned a first-round bye after posting the best record in the American League this year, so this should be another good series.
The Rangers had the best offense in the AL this year and it lived up to the hype against the Rays, racking up 11 runs on 21 hits in the two games. Texas is going to make life tough for the O's with its deep, potent lineup.
With that in mind, here's what the Rangers' starting lineup might look like for Game 1 of the ALDS on Saturday.
Rangers ALDS Game 1 Lineup Prediction
1. Marcus Semien - 2B
Semien hits for average and power, plus he gets on base and has some wheels. He's the perfect leadoff hitter and sets the tone for this lineup, so don't be surprised if he gets something started on Saturday.
2. Corey Seager - SS
Seager played at an MVP-level when healthy this year and has tons of playoff experience from his time with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He smoked 3 doubles during the first round, so he's swinging a hot bat right now too.
3. Robbie Grossman - DH
Grossman's a switch-hitter who gets on base (.340 OBP), which makes him a great glue guy and table-setter for the lineup.
4. Adolis Garcia - RF
A two-time All-Star with big-time power (39 HR, 107 RBIs), Garcia is the ideal cleanup man. He went yard in Game 2 and is always a threat to put one in the seats.
5. Nathaniel Lowe - 1B
It was fun seeing him square off with his brother Josh in the Wild Card Round, but now it's time for him to get back to business.
6. Jonah Heim - C
Heim was an All-Star this year but still feels like one of the more underrated catchers in baseball to me. Nobody ever talks about him, but he's one of the best hitters at his position and drove in nearly 100 runs this year.
7. Leody Taveras - CF
A switch-hitting center fielder with some speed and pop? What's not to like?
8. Josh Jung - 3B
It's good to have Jung back at the hot corner after he missed much of the second half with injury. He's looked a bit rusty at the plate since returning but went 3-for-4 with 3 extra-base hits in Game 2, so hopefully that carries over into the ALDS.
9. Evan Carter - LF
Are we sure this kid is a rookie? He posted a 1.058 OPS in 23 games during the regular season before going 3-for-4 with a homer and 3 walks against the Rays. He already looks incredibly polished for a 21-year-old and is already showing that he's not afraid of the spotlight.
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