Texas manager Bruce Bochy on the decision to start Andrew Heaney

He may have a career ERA of 7.63 in seven career games versus Baltimore batters and that includes a start this year in April in Texas when he allowed seven runs over 2 2/3 innings, but the Rangers are going with lefty Andrew Heaney (10-6, 4.15 ERA) as their Game 1 starter today.

He will oppose Orioles righty Kyle Bradish (12-7, 2.83 ERA) today at 1:03 p.m. in the opener of the American League Division Series at Camden Yards.

"We looked at a lot of things, but, number one, we looked at how well he's been throwing the ball," Texas manager Bruce Bochy said during his pregame press conference. "We had to win in Seattle. He pitched that game. He threw the ball well. He's our freshest guy. And they're a team that does a lot of platooning. And lefty or righty, they were going to match up. And we felt like he's the guy to go right now."

Heaney made the start last Saturday at Seattle and pitched 4 1/3 scoreless on five hits, throwing 85 pitches. He also threw nine scoreless innings combined over his past four games with three of them out of the bullpen.

Also, while Heaney had that poor start in April against the Orioles, on May 27 in Baltimore he allowed just one run over seven innings to the Orioles.

Bochy was asked how much Camden Yards was a factor in his decision to go with a lefty and the deep left field wall.

"Yeah, we looked at that, we looked at everything, all the variables that could come into play and that's certainly one of them," he said.

Austin Hays, leading off today for the Orioles, is 4-for-8 with two career homers versus Heaney. Ryan Mountcastle is 3-for-6 with two homers off the lefty. Aaron Hicks is 0-for-8, but is starting, and Jorge Mateo is 4-for-7 with a homer but is not.

When the Rangers set their playoff roster, right-hander Max Scherzer was not on it. He's been dealing with a shoulder issue since Sept. 12 and threw a sim game yesterday at Oriole Park in hopes of being active for this series. But he is not.

"Yeah, with Max, he threw yesterday and he threw well," said Bochy, a three-time World Series winning manager. "And today got up and felt pretty good. But still we didn't feel like we had enough information where we could put him on the roster right now. He was not going to be available the first two games, so we decided not to put him on for that reason.

"We'll continue his, you know, his throwing, and he'll continue to make progress and we'll see where we're at as we get deeper in this series."

Bochy won World Series with San Francisco in 2010, 2012 and 2014 and is 46-33 (.582) all-time in the postseason. Over his last 55 postseason games, his teams have gone 38-17 (.691).

He was asked what is important for a manager in playoff games and what he has learned over the years managing in so many of them.

"Well, I think you adjust on the fly when you get to the postseason," he said. "You can't script things out. You may tweak lineups or your pitching, how you work that. That margin of error is just not what it is during the season, so it's up to you to make those adjustments. That's probably what I've learned more than anything."

Rangers rookie outfielder Evan Carter, who went 3-for-4 in the two wins over the Rays in the Wild Card round with two doubles, a homer and three walks, has been moved up to fifth in the order today. In the regular season, he took 66 of his 75 plate appearances while batting ninth and he hit ninth twice this week versus Tampa Bay. 

During 23 games in the regular season after his September call-up, he hit .306 with an OPS of 1.058 with four doubles, a triple, five homers and 12 RBIs.

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