I think it is safe to say -- at least considering the situation -- that Derek Holland pitched the best game in Texas Rangers history last night. We've seen no-hitters before. We've seen a perfect game. We've even seen mastery in the postseason. But last night, down 2-1 in a second consecutive World Series, we saw dominant two hit scoreless baseball over 8 1/3 from Holland against a team that hung 16 on the Rangers the night before. Considering what tying this World Series means, there's now Derek Holland in Game 4 and then everyone else.
We had to sit around listening to superlatives directed at Albert Pujols over the last 24 hours because of what he did in Game 3. As good as Albert Pujols was with the bat two nights ago, Derek Holland was as good on the mound last night. The difference is, the Rangers needed Holland to be as great as he was.
- T.R. Sullivan writes about an all-time great Ranger pitching performance turned in by Derek Holland.
- Jeff Wilson quotes Nolan Ryan as saying Holland gave the Rangers "...the performance of his life" when the team needed him the most.
- Richard Durrett provides his reactions from the Rangers Series-tying 4-0 win.
- Drew Davison has a bunch of tidbits on how the Rangers came out victorious in Game 4.
- MLB.com Columnist Mike Bauman writes that with Holland's gem, the Rangers have wrestled the momentum away from the Cardinals.
Game 4 Features:
- Jeff Caplan has a piece on how the biggest out of the night might have been the first one.
- Anthony Andro writes about the Rangers' keystone combination coming up big in the field again in a Ranger win.
- Durrett writes about one of the hot media topics from after the game: What exactly did Ron Washington say to Derek Holland before the game and what was said when he went to the mound to take Holland out of the game?
- Caplan has a piece on Josh Hamilton -- who came through with the game-winning RBI in the first inning -- and how he is still producing even though he's playing hurt.
- MLB.com's Alden Gonzalez writes about how the Rangers' bullpen was especially grateful for Holland's masterpiece.
- Jim Reeves was busy worrying about the "Hang Around Theory" until Mike Napoli twisted the dagger with his sixth inning three-run home run.
- Behind the DMN paywall, Evan Grant examines how Napoli has had a knack for coming up big for the Rangers this season.
- MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince writes that the Year of the Napoli continues.
- David Schoenfield has a piece on how Holland and Napoli joined forces to lead the Rangers to a Game 4 win.
- Jean-Jacques Taylor, no doubt thinking DeMarco Murray would be the best performer he'd see all day, writes that Derek Holland was masterful.
- Behind the DMN paywall, Tim Cowlishaw thinks that Holland came as close to perfection as a Rangers fan could ask for.
- Randy Galloway agrees that Holland now holds the greatest pitching performance in club history. Yes, he even thinks Holland topped Nolan Ryan last night.
- Gil Lebreton writes that an all-grown-up Holland pitched the game of his life.
- ESPN's Stats & Info has a piece breaking down Holland's start and includes this gem: "The Rangers are the first AL team to pitch a shutout, allowing two hits or fewer in a World Series game since the Boston Red Sox got a one-hit shutout from Jim Lonborg against the Cardinals in Game 2 of the 1967 World Series."
- Yahoo! Sports' Steve Henson writes that Holland delightfully grew up right in front of our eyes last night.
- Jayson Stark writes that the narrative from Game 3 should have given Holland nightmares. Instead, Holland was a terror in Game 4.