A comfortable win with the Angels taking the day off has the Rangers waking up this morning with a 1 1/2 game lead in the American League West. That's not a bad way to roll out of bed at all.
T.R. Sullivan's game story focuses on the fact that with his win in last night's game, Matt Harrison joined the entire Rangers' pitching rotation in having at least 10 wins this season. That's the first time that's happened in team history. And it's still early August. The only other time in team history that five pitchers had 10 wins in one season was in 1996 (As Sullivan notes, Kevin Gross won 11 games that year but only 9 as a starter), and that Rangers team found itself playing October baseball.
Jeff Wilson's recap also focuses on Harrison and how even though he has gotten the least amount of run support among the five starters this season, that wasn't an issue in the game last night.
Drew Davison has some post game notes up. He mentions that with Harrison's tenth win, the Rangers are the only team with five starting pitchers with at least 10 wins so far this season.
ESPN Dallas' Jeff Caplan reacts to the Rangers' big series opening win with notes. I like this one in particular:
With the Los Angeles Angels getting the night off before starting a six-game road trip through The Bronx and Toronto, the Rangers increased their division lead to 1.5 games.
During that six-game road trip for the Angels, the Rangers will be playing two more at home against the Mariners followed by a three game set at Oakland.
Behind the DMN pay wall, Evan Grant writes about that upcoming stretch against the bottom half of the AL West.
T.R. Sullivan's Rangers notes include: Craig Gentry should be back on Wed. as the Rangers delayed his return to keep an extra bullpen arm, Michael Young's chances at 3,000 hits, Mike Adams on closing, and that the chances are looking slim that the Rangers will be able to sign sixth-round draft pick Derek Fisher among other notes.
Davison has a piece expounding on Adams' thoughts on his role in the bullpen with Adams saying his goal is to close some day.
On the guy who actually has the role of closer, Evan Grant sets up to figure out the difference between 2010 Neftali Feliz and this year's Neftali Feliz.
Behind the DMN paywall, Grant writes about Ian Kinsler's impact defense even in the midst of a hitting slump.
Caplan writes about Nelson Cruz's lack of consistency this season but sees him potentially getting on one of his hot streaks after a big game last night.
Finally, Caplan let's us know that Merle Haggard's That's The Way Baseball Go tribute song to Ron Washington is now available on iTunes. Let's get this song into the Top 40!