Nolan Ryan picks Rangers in six games

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Showing apparently little confidence in his ragtag group of ballplayers, Rangers CEO Nolan Ryan said Monday that his team would lose twice to the Cardinals before eventually winning the World Series in six games.

Ryan made the predicion on the ESPN Dallas “Galloway & Company” radio show.

Even though six of the last seven World Series have ended in four or five games, Ryan doesn’t think his team has what it takes to pull off such a feat and win the championship in front of the home fans in Arlington. Games 6 and 7 of the World Series are scheduled to be played at Busch Stadium.

The starters for Game 6 have yet to be announced, but it should be a rematch of Game 2, also in St. Louis. The Cardinals are expected to go with Jaime Garcia then. The Rangers figure to use either Derek Holland or Colby Lewis, with the other scheduled for Games 3 & 7.

Clayton Kershaw struggles with control, walks six Marlins

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Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw entered Wednesday night’s start against the Marlins without having issued a walk in his previous three starts. In fact, his last walk came on April 3 when he issued a free pass to Paul Goldschmidt with the bases empty and two outs in the bottom of the first inning. All told, Kershaw was on a streak of 26 walk-less innings before he took the mound at home to take on the Marlins.

Kershaw started off Wednesday in character, striking out the side in the first inning. He issued a walk in a tough second inning, but escaped without allowing a run. Kershaw walked two more in the third and again danced out of danger. In the fourth, Kershaw walked Lewis Brinson to load the bases with no outs and — you guessed it — didn’t end up allowing a run. His errant control finally came back to bite him in the fifth when Kershaw issued back-to-back two-out walks, then served up a three-run home run to Miguel Rojas down the left field line. His night was done when he completed the inning. Five innings, three runs, five hits, six walks, seven strikeouts, 112 pitches.

The six walks Kershaw issued over five innings marked his first six-walk outing since April 7, 2010 when he issued six free passes to the Pirates in 4 2/3 innings. The only other time he walked as many was on August 3, 2009 against the Brewers in a four-plus inning outing. Kershaw hasn’t even walked five batters in an outing recently — the last time was September 23, 2012 against the Reds.