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Thoughts on a 10-1 Rangers win

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A split in Oakland...I'll take that...

Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports

Rangers 10, Athletics 1

  • That was fun.
  • The Rangers just split a 4 game set, on the road, against a division rival, without their #1 starter going.  I'll take that.  Texas is now a half-game back of the Angels in the A.L. West, tied with Oakland for 2nd place in the division.
  • Two blowout losses, one blowout win, one reasonably close win.  Really, these sorts of early season results are a Rorschach Test of sorts.  If you think the Rangers can be good this season, this series probably reinforces that belief.  If you think the Rangers will be bad this season, you probably see this series or more evidence of that.
  • Nick Martinez won the fifth starter spot this spring, though there seemed to be a certain amount of sentiment among some fans that he's just keeping the job warm until Chi Chi Gonzalez is ready in a couple of months.  He is someone, though, whose development is going to be key in 2015, whether the Rangers are contending or determine they are building for the future.  Martinez pitched quite well today, throwing 7 shutout innings, giving up just 4 hits, striking out 5 and walking 2, with 62 of his 95 pitches for strikes.  Hopefully, the lessons of 2014 will be paying benefits with Martinez in 2015.
  • Keone Kela made his second appearance as a major leaguer, allowing a run on 2 hits and a walk.  The leadoff single he allowed was a softly hit ball on a fastball that jammed the hitter, but the double was legit.  Still, Kela stranded a pair, and the stuff is impressive.
  • Roman Mendez threw a scoreless ninth.  I didn't watch this and don't have anything to say about it, really.
  • The bats woke up today...after being shut out twice, and scoring 3 runs total in 3 games, the offense went off against Oakland starter Kendall Graveman, putting up 3 in the first, 2 in the third and 3 more in the fourth, making it a laugher before the game was halfway over.  Ryan Rua bounced back from an awful night last night to go 3 for 5 with a double, and Mitch Moreland, Shin-Soo Choo and Rougned Odor all homered.
  • Adrian Beltre even chipped in with his first two hits of the season, and Prince Fielder went 2 for 5.  Prince did his work from the DH spot, getting a day off from the field after his adventures in the field last night, and the Rangers got a first inning GIDP thanks to a great throw by replacement first baseman Mitch Moreland on a play that Prince likely would not have been able to make.
  • The only starters who didn't get hits today were Leonys Martin and Elvis Andrus.  But on the plus side, for the first time this season, Elvis didn't make an error.
  • Three games at home against the dreaded Astros tomorrow and this weekend.  Let's get this thing over .500 by the end of the day Sunday.