Season record: 7-7
Week 3 record: 2-2
Series record: 2-1, 1 split (Series against Oakland is TBD since Saturday’s game was postponed until June 8th)
With two off-days scheduled this week and an unintended off-day on Saturday after a rain-out, the Rangers only played four games this week and ending up back to .500 ball after some very odd games.
Looking back, they very easily could have, and maybe really should have, won all four games this week.
On Tuesday, their first game in a two-game series at the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Rangers had a 4-1 lead going into the 7th until Mike Minor (who now has back-to-back seven inning outings) gave up a solo home, cutting the lead to just two runs.
Leclerc came in the ninth to lock up yet another save, however it didn’t quite go as planned. After giving up a lead-off single, followed by a double and a strikeout, Leclerc gave up a pinch-hit three-run homer to Jarrod Dyson, earning his first blown save.
On Wednesday, the Rangers were being no-hit until Delino DeShields got a lead-off single and eventually coming around to score and tie the game. The Rangers continues to score in every inning of the game. Leclerc once again out to pitch the ninth, which personally I was happy to see, him getting a chance to recover from the night before.
However once again, he didn’t have it. He had absolutely no command of his fastball and it felt as though the Rangers might lose this one again. Leclerc gave up a single, hit the next two players, got a pop-up, and then walked in Arizona’s second run. That’s when he was pulled for Kyle Bird.
The Rangers managed to win that game 5-2 unscathed except for the obvious concern of if Leclerc was the next Rangers closer to be broken.
Friday’s home game against Oakland, probably should’ve been a win. The Rangers had a 6-1 lead going into the 6th inning until Smyly loaded the bases and Chavez cleared them, taking the lead down to 6-5. The A’s continued to score one run in each of the next three innings, including Khris Davis who somehow only hit one homer against the Rangers, losing the game 8-6.
Saturday’s game was rained out and will be played as a double header on Saturday June 8th aka Beltre’s Number Retirement Ceremony Day.
That brings us to Sunday’s game, the one game that looked like the Rangers had absolutely no chance of winning once they were down 7-2. But the Rangers chose to go with the chip-away process.
In the fifth, Delino got on base with a double, stole second, and then scored on a Hunter Pence sac-fly. Chip.
In the seventh, Elvis hit his third homer of the season. Chip.
In the eight, Mazara led off the inning with a single but ends up out at second after a Forsythe grounder to the shortstop. A wild pitch gets Forsythe to second and Choo gets on with a walk. Cabrera gets the RBI-single and Choo makes it to third. Chip.
And then Danny Santana gets his first AB as a Ranger, pinch-hitting for Patrick Wisdom.
And naturally, he triples.
And Oakland’s lead is gone.
With two outs and Santana at third, Delino comes up to bat and does something I personally love, bunts for a hit. And it paid off.
So taking an 8-7 lead into the ninth, Leclerc comes out. The Leclerc we all know and love. Strikeout, single, strikeout, strikeout.
OTHER NOTES (MOSTLY ELVIS THINGS)
-Rougie was put on the injured list for a right knee sprain retroactive to April 11 and will likely miss two weeks
-Elvis Andrus is now second on the Rangers all-time list for triples. He has 45, tied with Ruben Sierra, and sits just behind Michael Young who has 55.
-Elvis also now has five steals of home in his career, most ever for a Ranger.
-Sunday’s game was the fourth consecutive multi-hit game and is now batting .404
ANGELS SERIES PREVIEW
The Angels are in town for a three-game series and after sitting out from a possible groin-injury, it sounds like Mike Trout will play in this series.
The Rangers will face righty Trevor Cahill, Are-we-still-calling-him-the-dark-knight? Matt Harvey, and in the finale Felix Pena.
On the mound for the Rangers will be Shelby Miller, Mike Minor, and Lance Lynn.