Martin Perez began his 2017 season on his 26th birthday with a start that began a little like most of his starts. A little bit tantalizing. A little bit frustrating. A lot bit inconsistent. A wind-aided home run off the bat of Carlos Santana to start off the game gave Cleveland an early 1-0 lead. By the time the Rangers came to the plate in the bottom of the 2nd, it was 3-0 Indians with Cleveland scoring twice in the top of the 2nd.
Afterward, however, Perez settled in and pitched the next four innings without allowing a run to end his evening with a quality start. Six innings, five hits, three runs, four walks, and four strikeouts for the birthday boy. Cut down on the walks and you have something.
The Rangers bats have been loud this season but in a way that hadn't really been as effective as you'd hope. Texas has seen mammoth dingers from Carlos Gomez and Joey Gallo over the first two games and got a two-dong evening from Rougned Odor on Opening Night. Those four home runs had accounted for 100% of the Rangers run production up until Mike Napoli doubled to drive in Nomar Mazara in the 9th.
Bombos are a fun way to score but maybe toss in a couple of dink and dunk singles with runners in scoring position, eh?
The 9th inning rally fizzled with Delino DeShields standing on second base and the Rangers still down a run. It almost felt like 2016 again there for a moment but the Rangers couldn't get that last hit to square the game.
Texas is now 0-2 to start a season for the first time in a ten years when Ron Washington went 0-3 to begin his first season as manager. So, yeah, it's been a while.
Player of the Game: Here's your highlight of the season thus far:
Up Next: The Rangers send Cole Hamels to the mound for his 2017 debut as they look to salvage a win against the Indians. Cleveland will counter with RHP Danny Salazar. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 pm CT.