ST. PETERSBURG, FL - SEPTEMBER 09: Roy Oswalt #44 of the Texas Rangers throws a pitch during the game against the Tampa Bay Rays on September 9, 2012 at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Charles Sonnenblick/Getty Images)
I don't really have a lot to say about this game. Texas got down four runs early, and against James Shields, seemed helpless. For most of the game, the Rangers' lone hit was of the infield variety, a Nelson Cruz single that probably should have been scored an error. A late David Murphy single was all that kept there from being a big controversy over whether Shields should have been credited with a no-hitter.
Roy Oswalt was bad, again, and left after two innings, with word coming after the game that he was pulled because of elbow soreness. Whatever the reason, it was one more disappointing outing from Oswalt in a season full of them, and his ERA is now sitting at 6.29. It wouldn't surprise me if this is the last time Oswalt pitches for the Rangers, either because of his injury or because he and the team agree to a parting of the ways at this point.
Martin Perez was the lone bright spot of the game. He came in for Oswalt in the
7th 3rd and, other than when he was facing B.J. Upton, Perez was great. Upton homered twice off of Perez (Oswalt also allowed a homer to Upton, as well as a homer to Jose Molina), and whether he'd have a four homer game was the biggest item of intrigue in the late going. But Perez was solid, and I suspect that he'll pick up another start for Texas at some point this season.
The other noteworthy thing was that, in game ten of a ten game roadtrip, on turf, after three of extra inning games, Ron Washington played all of his regulars, and all of his regulars played all nine innings. Evan Grant tweeted during the game that the players had no energy and called them "zombies" afterwards, which led me to wonder, why not the "getaway day" lineup we so often see in these situations? I've written before that the regulars seem to be getting ridden very hard this season, and this seemed like a time to rest some guys. But even with Yoshinori Tateyama in the game, the regulars played the whole way.
I guess Ron Washington is at least a little concerned about the A's (now 3.5 games back) and the Angels (6 back).