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Thoughts on a 12-4 Rangers loss

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Astros 12, Rangers 4

MLB: Houston Astros at Texas Rangers Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Astros 12, Rangers 4

  • All things considered, a split of a four game set against the Astros isn’t a bad thing.
  • That said, given where the Rangers are in the standings, treading water isn’t really good enough, at least if the goal is the postseason.
  • It is particularly vexing given that the Rangers won the first two games and were in position to win game three, giving us hopes of a season-changing sweep of Houston, bringing back memories of 2015. Instead, we had a symmetrical series, with a big win, a one run win, a one run loss, and finally a big loss.
  • Ariel Jurado got screwed on the strike zone in the first inning, but even that notwithstanding, he didn’t have much today. He labored to get through four innings with 99 pitches, allowing 7 hits and 4 walks, which makes the fact he allowed “only” five runs kind of remarkable.
  • Jurado was pushed longer than normal because yesterday’s game necessitated a number of innings from the pen, and with the pen thin anyway, Chris Woodward, I’m sure, didn’t want to go to the relievers until he had to. And with good reason, as it turned out, since Jesse Biddle and Kyle Bird combined to give up 7 runs in the 7th inning, turning the game into a blowout.
  • Biddle has now allowed 33 runs in 28 innings this season between Atlanta, Seattle and Texas. I didn’t understand why Texas claimed him, and I’m currently at a loss as to why he is still on the roster.
  • Bird has options at least, and pitched well in Nashville before this latest call up, though he is still sporting an 8.31 ERA.
  • Willie Calhoun had 2 hits today, and Elvis Andrus, Nomar Mazara and Rougned Odor each had 1 apiece. They also drew 5 walks. Remarkably, other than a second inning leadoff walk, all those hits and walks came in either the 1st or 7th innings. Justin Verlander retired 15 straight from the 2nd through the 6th, and Astros relievers retired 7 in a row to end the game.
  • There’s a day off tomorrow for us to mull over things. Changes are likely coming, as Hunter Pence is likely being activated Tuesday. With off days Monday and Thursday the Rangers could drop a reliever and go with a 7 man bullpen (with Adrian Sampson being the 7th guy with no fifth starter being needed for another week), but that just kicks the can on what position player has to go for another few days. And with Wei-Chieh Huang and Brady Feigl now apparently healthy, Texas could look at some different arms from the guys currently sitting in the bullpen.