Funny, the Rangers, just hours ago really, were within a strike of losing this three-game set to Seattle and needing a win today to just salvage something from this series. One swing of the bat by Prince Fielder last night saved the Rangers from facing the possibility of leading the AL West by only one game should the M's have also won today.
Instead, Fielder allowed the Rangers to keep playing baseball last night and Rougned Odor finished off the Mariners with a blast of his own. Just like that, a potential series loss gave Texas the chance for redemption and they did not miss.
A 6-4 win today sends the Rangers to a season-high 15 games over .500 and a season-high five game lead in the American League West. The American League's top team walk away from Seattle having won seven consecutive series.
Highlights of today's win include Mitch Moreland showing crazy power by hitting an opposite field home run at Safeco on a pitch down and away. Moreland is perhaps coming around as he hit three home runs in this series with today's dinger showing prenatural caveman strength.
Cole Hamels still looks a little bit iffy in terms of his command but he did pitch seven innings of one-run ball, perhaps in a nod to Colby Lewis, allowing just a solo Leonys Martin home run. In addition, Hamels collected career strikeout #2,000 and his sixth win of 2016.
I should also note that Ian Desmond had a couple of hits, including one with the bases loaded with two out to turn a 4-1 game into a 6-1 game and put things virtually out of reach. Then again, this is just what Ian Desmond does every day.
The only bad news came in the 8th when Seattle loaded the bases with one out off Tony Barnette and then saw Jake Diekman allow two runs on a HBP to Kyle Seager and an walk to Chris Iannetta. Diekman was able to force Martin into a groundout to second to end the threat and Sam Dyson came on for the save in the 9th. Having to use your 8th and 9th inning guys in a game that was 6-1 with an out in the 8th is less than ideal.
Edit: Sorry but you're pregnant now.
Player of the Game: Elvis Andrus went 3-5 with two RBI, two runs scored, and a stolen base while saving Hamels from a couple of runs by climbing the ladder to make a catch to end the bottom of the 7th.
Up Next: The Rangers open a four-game series against the Oakland A's on Monday with either Cesar Ramos, Connor Sadzeck, or Kyle Lohse expected to make the start in Yu Darvish's stead. Oakland will counter with rookie left-handed starter Sean Manaea. First pitch from Oakland is scheduled for 9:05 pm CT.