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Thoughts on a 4-1 Rangers win

Rangers 4, A’s 1

MLB: Texas Rangers at Oakland Athletics Andrew Villa-USA TODAY Sports

Rangers 4, A’s 1

  • Woo-hoo!!! The Rangers won again!!!
  • What a weird game from Cole Hamels. Hamels’ velocity is down from previous years, and his command is shaky, but he continues to miss bats. Last night he allowed just 1 run on 4 hits and 3 walks — the one hit being a solo home run off of Chad Pinder, who is now 6 for 6 off of Hamels with 3 home runs — while striking out 11 in just 5 innings pitched. Over half the batters Hamels faced, he struck out, but 7 of the other 10 batters got on base. Its freaky.
  • Hamels was missing his spots early on, but was still getting swings and misses. I am concerned about how well Hamels will do going forward, however, throwing 90 mph with middling command.
  • The bullpen was asked to pitch four innings and did its job, with Alex Claudio going two, Chris Martin going one and Keone Kela getting the save. The ability of Claudio to go multiple innings has the potential to be a lifesaver for this pen, given the starting pitchers aren’t going to work deep into games, and I think we could see him used more and more in a middle relief multi-inning role, rather than, say, as the 7th or 8th inning guy in particular.
  • The Rangers could have, maybe should have, scored more than the four runs they registered, but lost four outs on the basepaths — Rougned Odor was thrown out trying to steal second twice, Ryan Rua was thrown out trying to steal third on the front end of a double steal, and Nomar Mazara was thrown out trying to score on a Robinson Chirinos double. Jonathan Lucroy was behind the plate, and one has to wonder if the Rangers have a dismissive view of his throwing arm based on his performance with Texas last year.
  • Joey Gallo had his second home run of the year, and like the first one, it was kind of a pedestrian home run, a down the line shot that didn’t go a massive distance. Really, the most impressive ball he’s hit was that rocket that hit off the top of the wall in center field in the first series of the season.
  • Two hit nights for Rougned Odor, Robinson Chirinos, and Nomar Mazara. If you’re doing the Nomar Mazara Breakout Watch, he’s up to .286/.375/.476 on the season. I’d take that.
  • Everyone got a hit yesterday except Elvis Andrus and Shin-Soo Choo, the two guys who have been the two best hitters for Texas so far this season, so, you know, regression to the mean, things even out, etc. etc. etc.