If this was Martin Perez’s final game with the Rangers, let it be known that he frustrated to the bitter end. Fittingly, Perez more than likely ended his time with Texas tonight with a performance as maddening as his overall career.
Perez was a totem of possibilities for a decade now after signing with the Rangers in 2007 and becoming one of their more heralded pitching prospects in some time. And yet, after six years in the big leagues now, Perez never really could make his extremely swing and miss adverse stuff work — especially after Tommy John surgery in 2014 robbed him of his changeup, his best pitch.
Over the years, besides the hope with each new season that this would be the one that saw Perez finally put it together, the main things that became his signature with the Rangers was a propensity for unraveling during a difficult inning and, on a more positive note, using his two-seamer to rack up double plays.
Tonight, true to form, Perez allowed five runs (two earned) and exited with just one out recorded in the second inning after walking four Mariners and giving up an RBI single in his second frame of the night. Perez walked five Mariners total and, yes, induced a double play.
The ‘Teen is dead, long live the Texas Rangers pitching prospect!
Player of the Game: Adrian Beltre drove in two runs to pass Frank Thomas and move to 21st all-time on the RBI list. Adrian Beltre is going out slaying giants.
Tank Update: The Reds are putting on a tanking master class as they lost again tonight for the sixth consecutive game and their eighth in the last ten games. The Rangers will have to lose their final two games and Cincinnati will have to win their last two for Texas to move to the 7th pick.
The Rangers can lose up to 95 games this season if they lose out. 95 losses last season would have been bad enough for the 4th pick in the draft this year. 95 losses in 2016 would have gotten you the 2nd overall pick in the 2017 draft.
The last time I could find an instance where a 95-loss season wouldn’t have landed a team in the top five of the draft was 2013 when 95 losses awarded only the 6th pick. In case you didn’t notice, reality is not very Rangers friendly.
Up Next: The Rangers and Mariners play the penultimate game of the 2018 season on Saturday night with Adrian Sampson set to square off against LHP James Paxton. First pitch from Safeco Field is scheduled for 9:10 pm CT once more.