ARLINGTON -- Rangers starters averaged 6 1/3 innings per start over their first 10 games, but are down to 4 1/3 innings per start in their last seven.
The starters also went at least six innings in eight of their first 10 starts, but C.J. Wilson is the only starter to go six innings over the last seven. On Saturday night, Scott Feldman lasted just 3 2/3 innings, and the Rangers needed 4 1/3 scoreless innings from Doug Mathis to get through the game without wrecking the bullpen.
The 'pen, going into Sunday, is third in the American League in innings pitched, and Mathis is tied with four other pitchers for most relief innings in the league with 12. Dustin Nippert and Mathis are two of 13 AL relievers who have pitched at least 10 innings.
"It's putting a heavy load on the bullpen, but some guys have been stepping up," manager Ron Washington said. "Mathis stepped up and saved us. We certainly want to see these guys get deeper. Having to pick up four or five innings every night, sooner or later, is going to hurt you. Those guys have to go deeper in the game, no doubt about it."