ARLINGTON -- Rangers pitcher Derek Holland accomplished a personal goal during Monday's 12-0 victory over the Astros. Holland, with nine scoreless innings, has now pitched 208 1/3 innings this season.
It's the first time in his career he has reached the 200-inning mark. He finished with 198 in 2011 and then dropped to 175 1/3 last year when he missed time with a stomach virus. Going into Tuesday, Holland was seventh in the American League in innings pitched.
"Yeah it means something, it means I did something good this year," Holland said. "It's a huge accomplishment. The goal you set every year is to go 200 innings. When you go over 200 innings, you must be doing something right. To me, that's huge."
Holland gave credit to the Rangers training staff, especially strength and conditioning coordinator Jose Vazquez.
"I feel I'm stronger than I have been in my career and I'm in the best shape," Holland said. "There is still more. There is always more. But this year I have been really consistent."
Holland has one more regular season start scheduled for Saturday against the Angels. Yu Darvish is joining Holland in the 200-inning club. He went into Tuesday's start against the Astros having pitched 198 2/3 innings and also has one more start on Sunday against the Angels.
"It's definitely important," manager Ron Washington said. "Those type of innings show you're getting deep into ballgames and making your starts. When we lost some of our pitching staff, those guys had to take on that load and they did. It's a huge accomplishment."
Holland's shutout on Monday was his seventh in the past five years. The only two pitchers with more are Cliff Lee with 10 and Roy Halladay with nine. Clayton Kershaw and Felix Hernandez both have seven too.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. Master Tesfatsion is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less