D-backs’ Zac Gallen to start Game 1 of World Series; Nathan Eovaldi for Rangers

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By Samantha Rose

When the Arizona Diamondbacks play in the World Series for the first time in 22 years, it will be right-hander Zac Gallen who takes the hill. On the other hand, the Texas Rangers will send veteran Nathan Eovaldi to the hill.

Arizona and Texas each announced Wednesday that the aforementioned Gallen and Eovaldi will be their team’s respective starting pitchers for Game 1 of the 2023 World Series, which will air exclusively on FOX.

Gallen has made four starts for Arizona this postseason, the first of his MLB career. Across those outings (22.1 combined innings against the Milwaukee Brewers, Los Angeles Dodgers and Philadelphia Phillies), he has a 5.24 ERA, 1.48 WHIP and 13 strikeouts.

The 28-year-old Gallen is coming off a splendid regular season. Gallen, who started for the National League in this year’s MLB All-Star Game, posted a 3.47 ERA, 1.12 WHIP and 220 strikeouts across 210.0 innings (34 starts). Arizona will presumably start right-hander Merrill Kelly in Game 2.

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The Diamondbacks swept the Brewers in the best-of-three wild-card round, swept the Dodgers in the NL Divisional round and then beat the Phillies in seven games in the NLCS.

Meanwhile, Eovaldi has made four starts himself this postseason for Texas. Across those outings (26.0 combined innings against the Tampa Bay Rays, Baltimore Orioles and Houston Astros), he has a 2.42 ERA, 0.96 WHIP and 28 strikeouts. 

While he missed six weeks due to an elbow injury, the 33-year-old Eovaldi put together a plausible regular season; he posted a 3.63 ERA, 1.14 WHIP and 132 strikeouts across 144.0 innings (25 starts). Texas will presumably start left-hander Jordan Montgomery in Game 2.

The Rangers swept the Rays in the best-of-three wild-card round, swept the Orioles in the ALDS and beat the Astros in seven games in the ALCS.

First pitch for Game 1 is Friday at 8:03 p.m. ET (FOX and the FOX Sports app). 

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