LEADING OFF: Hamels looks for 1st decision; Cubs in Cincy
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A look at what's happening all around the majors Friday:
HAMELS LOOKS FOR A DECISION
Cole Hamels makes his fourth start this season for Texas, and the Rangers left-hander still is looking for his first decision when the team hosts Kansas City. The 33-year-old Hamels has a 3.50 ERA and exited each of his three starts in position for a win, but the Rangers lost all of those games. Only once in his big league career has Hamels made four consecutive starts without a decision — midway through the 2010 season with Philadelphia. He was 2-0 in his first three starts last year, his first full season in Texas and then won his fourth start. That was after going 0-2 his first three games in three consecutive seasons for the Phillies (2013-15).
The Cubs return to Great American Ball Park, where they romped during their World Series championship season. The Cubs have won 18 of their last 22 games against the Reds overall. They piled up 42 homers off Cincinnati pitching last season, the most ever by a Reds opponent, and they've homered in each of their last 12 games at Great American. As Reds manager Bryan Price puts it, "You can't have somebody run roughshod over you."
Daniel Murphy wrecked the Mets last year, getting a hit in all 19 games he played against his former team. He wound up batting .413 (31 for 75) with seven home runs and 21 RBIs for the Nationals, who signed Murphy after he was MVP of the 2015 NL Championship Series for New York. Murphy gets his first look at the Mets this year when Washington visits Citi Field.
STILL IN SEARCH OF NO. 1
Right-hander Hisashi Iwakuma (0-1, 5.40 ERA) — a 16-game winner last year — tries again for his first win of the season for Seattle when the Mariners play the second game of a four-game weekend series at Oakland. It will be Iwakuma's fourth start of 2017.
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