Nobody show MLB commissioner Rob Manfred the details of this one or else he’ll petition to eliminate the final five innings of each game. Tonight was not a fun game for people who like crisp, fast-moving baseball. It ended up being a fun game for people who like baseball games where the home team comes back from the dead to win, though.
The issue was, neither Cubs starter Yu Darvish nor Edinson Volquez could find the strike zone. Darvish walked a career high seven batters and failed to make it out of at least the third inning for the first time in his career.
For the Rangers, Volquez, making his first start wearing the Texas T on his cap since 2007, and his first start in the big leagues overall since 2017, walked four Cubs and allowed four runs on additional six hits while striking out just three in four innings of work.
The Rangers got away with it anyway even though they didn’t cash in too much while Darvish was struggling. After trailing 6-3 through six innings, the Rangers rallied to score two in the bottom of the seventh on a Shin-Soo Choo RBI single to draw themselves to within a run. The big hit came an inning later when Joey Gallo swatted his first dong of the year — a three-run shot — off former Hickory teammate Carl Edwards Jr. to put Texas up 8-6.
Looking to avoid finding themselves in an 0-2 hole to start the season, Texas turned to closer Jose Leclerc to finish off Chicago. And even though it took nearly four hours to do so, after a brisk ninth from Leclerc, the Rangers have their first win of 2019.
Player of the Game: New third baseman Asdrubal Cabrera had a nice evening going 3-for-4 with a walk and a two-run home run that knocked Darvish out of the game and continued to look comfortable playing the hot corner.
Up Next: The Rangers and Cubs close out this series with new face Lance Lynn set to make his debut with Texas against old, handsome face Cole Hamels coming in to take on his old team with Chicago. First pitch of the finale is scheduled for 3:05 pm CT.