I ominously noticed in the top of the first inning that White Sox starter Michael Kopech had insane movement on his pitches to the point that it looked like he was doing Blitzball tricks from the mound. Three innings later, and the Rangers had K’d eight times through their first nine outs of the game.
Were Kopech not getting the kid-glove treatment from the White Sox in just his second start of the season, it felt like he could have turned in an extra egregious outing with the way his stuff was playing.
Ultimately though, he was lifted after five innings and just 87 pitches but with 10 strikeouts (a career high) and one solo David Dahl dong allowed.
Meanwhile, Rangers starter Kohei Arihara looked like pitching on a four days rest schedule for the first time in his career had finally caught up with him as, a few days after acknowledging his aversion to allowing walks, he looked fatigued and walked four White Sox in the first inning alone and finished his day after just two innings while allowing five runs.
It took Arihara 70 pitches to get through two frames as the Rangers pretty much left him out there to sink or swim while the lineup was drowning. Before the end of the third inning, it was 8-1 White Sox and the Rangers looked like they were ready to get the heck out of Chicago.
Texas did have a rally in them, though, as they scored three runs in the top of the sixth inning after Kopech had hit the showers. The Rangers started the inning with four consecutive singles but, besides the Dahl homer early, Texas never really got that big bases-clearing extra base hit to turn the tide.
The Rangers came into this series with a chance to climb back over .500 and leave four games under after they were swept.
Player of the Game: Even though Isiah Kiner-Falefa committed an unexpected error on a poor throw, he was also the only Ranger in the lineup that didn’t strike out today as he went 3-for-5 with three singles, a run scored, and a stolen base.
And, yes, Joey Gallo reached base again (twice, via singles) today.
Up Next: The Rangers will welcome the Anaheim Angels to Arlington to begin a three-game set against their division rivals. RHP Jordan Lyles will make the start in the opener against RHP Shohei Ohtani. Monday’s first pitch from The Shed is scheduled for 7:05 pm CT.