Rangers 2, Royals 1
- The story of the game? Nick Martinez. Sent to AAA to start the season, called up to the majors briefly earlier in the year but optioned back down without getting into a game, Martinez was called up yesterday for a spot start in place of the d.l.’d A.J. Griffin and was terrific, giving up just 1 run on 4 hits and a walk in 7 IP. He took a no-hitter into the sixth inning, when he gave up the run, but even the three hits that he allowed in that inning weren’t all that hard hit. An outstanding outing by Martinez, keeping the Rangers in the game so they were in position to walk it off in the 9th.
- Alex Claudio and Matt Bush pitched the 8th and 9th, and for each it was largely uneventful, each pitcher giving up a hit but not ever really being in trouble.
- The bats, meanwhile, were once again pretty disappointing for most of the game. Carlos Gomez had a 3 hit night, which is encouraging, given he’s not hit well most of the year. The rest of the team combined for just four hits on the night. Mike Napoli’s opposite field home run that snuck into the wedge in right field was the only scoring for the Rangers until the ninth.
- Rougned Odor singled to start off the ninth inning off of Travis Wood, who was promptly lifted in favor of Peter Moylan. Elvis Andrus showed bunt on the first pitch, then swung through a nasty sinker on the second pitch of the at bat, a busted hit-and-run that worked out when Odor slid into second ahead of the throw. Elvis followed that up by lacing a line drive down the left field line that brought Odor home with the winning run, and allowing everyone to celebrate.
- The only other hit in the game for the Rangers was by Shin-Soo Choo, who was 1 for 3 with a walk. Jonathan Lucroy and Nomar Mazara continued to slump, going hitless, although each had a walk. Jurickson Profar also was 0 for 3, while Joey Gallo had a walk and 2 Ks.
- The bats didn’t do much, but thanks to Nick Martinez, they didn’t have to. There’s a good chance Martinez is back down to AAA shortly, but he came up big for Texas yesterday, and it is really nice when one of your depth rotation guys steps up and does great work when pressed into duty.
- Now let’s see if Texas can finish off the sweep today...