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Thoughts on a 5-3 Rangers loss

ChiSox 5, Rangers 3

MLB: Texas Rangers at Chicago White Sox Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

ChiSox 5, Rangers 3

  • Ariel Jurado is no longer a dude, having made his major league debut tonight in a spot start against Chicago. Jurado has been with AA Frisco this year, and has been having a nice but not overwhelming campaign for the Roughriders, so expectations tonight for the righthander were moderate — throw strikes, give Texas some innings and keep them in the game. And Jurado did that -- he had a bad four-run third inning, but was generally respectable, throwing 4.2 IP, allowing the 4 runs on 6 hits and 2 walks, striking out 2.
  • Brandon Mann got the Rangers from Jurado’s departure through the one-third point in the seventh, putting up another 1.2 scoreless innings, before giving way to Kevin Jepsen. Jepsen immediately allowed a home run to Jose Abreu on a poorly located two strike Paul Lynde fastball. Jepsen had a very nice spring training and started the season respectably, but he’s completely fallen off as of late, and with Chris Martin likely activated from the disabled list tomorrow and Tim Lincecum due back in a week or so, Jepsen could find himself a roster casualty in the near future.
  • Jake Diekman pitched 1.1 scoreless innings, striking out one and allowing one hit, and lowering his ERA to 3.38 on the season. Diekman is a free agent at season’s end, and thus almost certain to be dealt before at least the end of August -- as a rental lefty bullpen piece, him showing the velocity and command is back over the next couple of months will be instrumental in determining what the Rangers get back for him when he is traded.
  • The offense was a major disappointment, particularly given the early struggles of ChiSox starter Lucas Giolito. Giolito allowed two runs in the second and a run in the third, and then Texas did basically nothing the rest of the way. No one had more than one hit, and the offensive star of the game was probably Isiah Kiner-Falefa, who got on base twice due to HBPs. If he’s not the next Michael Young, maybe he can be the next Ron Hunt.
  • Evan Grant pointed out on Twitter that, other than Robinson Chirinos and Shin-Soo Choo, everyone the Rangers rolled out there today was 25 or younger. That’s something worth remembering when evaluating where this team is and what its future holds. There’s young talent that is in the majors now and getting some chances — some of them will pan out, some of them won’t. But teams that do the complete tear down, tank, hope to compete in five years routine don’t usually have a bunch of guys who aren’t old enough to rent cars in the every day lineup. There’s work to be done to get the Rangers back to relevance, but there are also some young pieces here already that have the potential to be core parts moving forward.