There couldn’t have been a better “holiday” for this Opening Day than April Fools’ Day. The Texas Rangers came out of the gates with a five spot in the first inning and had the home team faithful at Kauffman Stadium booing their Kansas City Royals mere minutes into the 2021 campaign.
The joke was on us in the end, however.
Kyle Gibson was the de facto Opening Day starter for the Rangers and he’d preached how he was hoping to use the honor to set the tone for the season and, well, if that’s so, then we’re in for quite a tragic summer.
Gibson lasted all of a third of an inning in his season debut as the Royals tied the game at five apiece for a combined ten runs in what ended up being an hour plus first frame to begin the season.
I guess the Rangers and Royals are trying to make up for lost 2020 games as today’s opener took well over four agonizing hours to complete and included three Rangers errors, a couple of Royals wild pitches, a passed ball from each club, 12 pitching changes, 30 hits, 17 walks, and 402 total pitches between the two teams.
To summarize, it was ugly. Nevertheless, there’s only 161 of these things to go!
Player of the Game: Nate Lowe had a nice debut (if his defense at first base is ignored) for the Rangers with two hits and four RBIs. David Dahl and Jose Trevino led the way with three hits each for Texas. Joey Gallo went 2-for-3 with three walks. Overall, the untested Rangers lineup was not the issue today.
But the PotG was undoubtedly reliever John King for being the only Rangers pitcher to mercifully have an unblemished outing.
Up Next: The Rangers have tomorrow off to think about what they’ve done before picking up the rest of this series on Saturday afternoon. RHP Kohei Arihara will make his stateside debut for Texas while former Rangers Opening Day starter Mike Minor will start for KC.
Saturday’s first pitch from Kauffman stadium is scheduled for 1:10 pm CT.