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Thoughts on a 7-2 Rangers win

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Rangers 7, Rays 2

  • Texas is now 5.5 games up on Seattle and Oakland, 9 games up on Anaheim
  • Texas has still not lost back-to-back regular season games since last August
  • After allowing 1 walk, total, in his previous 4 starts, Colby Lewis walked 3 batters today, against 5 strikeouts. Still, he limited Tampa to 1 run in 6 innings, lowering his ERA to 1.93. He has yet to allow more than 2 runs in a game.
  • Didn't you expect, coming into the season, we'd see a lot of wins where Alexi Ogando, Mike Adams, and Koji Uehara pitched the 7th/8th/9th? That's what we saw tonight.
  • Uehara's ERA is now 2.57 this season.
  • In the first inning, after Ian Kinsler drew a walk, Elvis Andrus showed bunt. He didn't bunt, and ended up doubling to right-center field, moving Kinsler to third. They both scored on a Josh Hamilton single. If Elvis gets the bunt down, the Rangers score 1 run. Because he didn't, they scored 2 runs. That's why I don't like the constant bunting with Elvis when Kinsler gets on.

  • After Elvis Andrus struck out on a 3-2 pitch in an at bat where he thought he walked, the Rays, with first base open (Ian Kinsler had advanced to second on a Jose Molina throwing error during the Andrus AB), the Rays walked Josh Hamilton to face Adrian Beltre with two outs. Beltre hit a pizza dong, a line drive into the right field stands that featured Matt Joyce jumping into the wall while having no chance of catching the blast, and that gave the Rangers the magical 7 runs necessary for you people who live in the Dallas/Fort Worth area to get 50% off at Papa John's tomorrow.
  • The Molina throwing error mentioned above came when he tried to pick Mitch Moreland off of third base. The Rays seemed concerned that the Rangers were going to try to squeeze with runners on the corners and Elvis up with one out, and the Molina throw down to third seemed designed in part to intimidate Moreland into staying closer to the bag. Instead, the throw hit Moreland sliding into third and bounced away, allowing Mitch to score and Kinsler to advance.
  • According to Tom Grieve, the runner tries to slide where he thinks the ball is coming, in the hopes that the ball will hit him and bounce away.
  • Mitch Moreland was 2 for 4 tonight and is now 5 for his last 9, giving some signs that he's snapping out of his early season slump.
  • The #5-8 hitters were 0 for 14 with a walk and 5 Ks. That included an 0 for 4 from Nelson Cruz, who looks as bad right now as I've ever seen him. At one point, they showed the Fox pitch tracker during a lengthy battle between Cruz and Jeff Niemann, where it appeared that Niemann was just pumping balls in there up in the zone, and Cruz simply couldn't do anything with pitches he would normally drive.
  • Desmond Jennings certainly looks like he covers a lot of ground in the outfield.
  • Craig Gentry did not, for whatever reason, come into the game for defensive purposes tonight. It is only the fourth time this season Gentry hasn't appeared, and only the second win. The other Ranger victory that Gentry sat out entirely was the 10-4 doubleheader Game 1 in Detroit.