Rangers 7, Astros 4
- So far, signing A.J. Griffin seems to be working out okay for the Rangers. A quality start for Griffin tonight, his second in three outings this year, and his third start, he allowed two runs in five innings. There was a lot of angst over the Rangers depth situation in the rotation, but Griffin has done all you could ask from him so far this season. No telling how long he can keep this up, but if he is healthy and back to where he was pre-TJS, he's a useful back-end starter.
- Tony Barnette was asked to go two innings tonight, and he almost did it, recording five outs before giving up a two run home run to Colby Rasmus.m that cut the Rangers lead down to three, and prompted Jeff Banister to get Jake Diekman to finish the 8th, and Shawn Tolleson to pitch the ninth. Diekman and Tolleson have now each pitched in three straight games, and are likely unavailable for tomorrow night's game in Chicago.
- It would have been nice if Barnette could have retired Rasmus. Up five, Banister probably uses Phil Klein or Tom Wilhelmsen in the 9th, and Diekman and Tolleson would have gotten a day off. With Kela now on the d.l., Barnette is apparently going to be asked yo take on a bigger role protecting leads in the middle innings.
- Prince Fielder hit a pop up that was dropped by the Astros for the second night in a row tonight. Unlike yesterday, today's foul was dropped in foul territory. Still weird though.
- Also weird...Bryan Holaday stole second on an attempted hit and run, then advanced to third when the throw went into center...except Hanser Alberto hit Jason Castro with his back swing, and thus Holaday was sent back to first. The Rangers have been involved in way too many interference calls on attempted steals this year.
- Multi-hit nights for Adrian Beltre, Ryan Rua, Nomar Mazara, and Holaday. Oh, and Ian Desmond, who also had a first inning three run home run, as he continues to show signs of shaking his slump.
- A sweep of Houston and first place in the West. That's fun, right?