It's about time the Texas Rangers were able to put on a nice, lengthy homestand for their fans.
Entering the current series with Cleveland, the Rangers had played just 26 games in their own yard, fewer than any other team in baseball. And after Monday's 6-3 win over the Indians, Texas pushed its record at the Ballpark in Arlington to 19-8, the best home mark in the American League.
The Rangers will send southpaw Derek Holland to the mound on Tuesday in the second of the three-game series that opens an 11-game homestand. Right-hander Corey Kluber is scheduled to throw for the visiting Indians.
"From a hitting standpoint, I feel like our offense lights up when we hit here," Texas left fielder David Murphy said. "It's great to be home for 11. We're only gone for a short time after that, and then come back home. For the next three weeks, it's going to be awesome to spend a lot of our time at home."
Kluber is tasked with slowing down a Rangers offense that averages 5.07 runs per game at home. He'll likely have a cluster of support in the stands, as his hometown of Coppell, Texas, is only about a half-hour away.
In three Major League seasons, Kluber has never pitched against the Rangers. Though the right-hander is coming off a loss in Yankee Stadium in which he allowed six runs (four earned) in six innings, Tribe manager Terry Francona has been impressed with Kluber's growth.
"He's getting better right in front of our eyes," Francona said. "He's pitching in with his fastball so aggressively, and it's opening up the whole plate. I think in Spring Training -- he had a minor knee surgery this winter -- and he never said two words about it during the spring. But I don't think he was able to push off that leg a lot. To his credit, he never said a word.
"You can see now, obviously, he feels better physically and I think he's starting to understand it."
Kluber turned in three straight quality starts in the middle of May. This season, he's gone 3-4 with a 4.56 ERA over 10 outings, including eight starts.
Cleveland could certainly use a decent outing from Kluber. The Tribe has lost eight straight and 16 of the past 20.
Indians: McDonald comes back to Cleveland
Cleveland announced on Monday that it had acquired shortstop John McDonald from the Pirates in exchange for a player to be named and/or cash considerations. Six days before, the Tribe placed shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera on the 15-day disabled list with a right quad strain.
The Indians also announced that injured right-hander Brett Myers had been transferred to the 60-day DL.
In 16 games with Pittsburgh, McDonald batted .065 (2-for-31) with one RBI and eight strikeouts. The Indians drafted McDonald in 1996. In six years with Cleveland, he hit .231 with four home runs and 33 RBIs.
The Tribe will also rely on Mike Aviles to play shortstop during Cabrera's absence. Cabrera, a two-time All-Star, will likely be out for another two or three weeks, according to Francona.
Rangers: Holland trying to stay undefeated vs. Tribe
• Maybe there's something about being born 2 1/2 hours away from Cleveland that makes Holland so effective against the Indians. The Newark, Ohio, native is 3-0 with a 2.31 ERA in six career starts against the Tribe. In 39 innings, the lefty has allowed 35 hits while striking out 31 and walking 11.
But the Indians aren't the only team Holland has fared well against, especially lately. The left-hander hasn't lost since April 27, and in his last seven appearances, Holland is 4-0 with a 2.40 ERA. He has lasted at least six innings and held the opposition to two runs in three straight starts.
Over 12 starts this season, Holland is 5-2 with a 2.82 ERA.
• The Rangers announced during Monday's game that about 4,500 reserved tickets remain for Tuesday's contest. The first 20,000 fans will receive a Yu Darvish bobblehead that features a strikeout counter.
• By going 2-for-5 on Monday, Elvis Andrus has hit safely in all 33 career games against Cleveland. In that time, he's batting .380 (49-for-129) with eight doubles, one triple and three homers. Andrus also has 22 RBIs and 24 runs scored while going 6-for-6 in steal attempts.
• In 23 career games against Texas, Indians catcher Carlos Santana is batting .314 (27-for-86) with 10 doubles, five homers and 17 RBIs. He has also scored 14 runs to go along with nine walks and 23 strikeouts.
Mark Emery is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.