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Thoughts on a 9-4 Rangers loss

Angels 9, Rangers 4

MLB: Los Angeles Angels at Texas Rangers Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Angels 9, Rangers 4

  • And things started off so well.
  • Well, technically, they didn’t start off well. The game started with the Angels scoring a run in the top of the first. But the Rangers knocked around Shohei Ohtani in the bottom of the first, and things seemed to be good.
  • Things lied though. Jordan Lyles allowed three runs in the second, then back to back home runs to Justin Upton and Albert Pujols to start the third. Lyles was tagged with another run before Chris Woodward mercifully pulled him from the game.
  • I didn’t understand the Lyles signing when the Rangers made that move. He got off to a decent start this year in the tandem role, but after today’s disaster — which featured 10 hits and 3 walks, as Lyles retired just 8 of the 21 batters he faced — Lyles ERA is up to 6.75 on the year. Lyles shouldn’t be in a major league starting rotation, but given the lack of alternatives, there’s not really much choice right now. Maybe someone can emerge once the minor league season starts as a potential replacement — though even then it’s not a given that Lyles would be the first guy replaced, given the options.
  • I’ve kind of bummed myself out.
  • Hyeon-jong Yang made his major league debut in place of Lyles, and was fine. He needed just 66 pitches to go 4.1 IP, so he at least soaked up some innings, and I would wager will be paired with Lyles next time around. No walks, just one K, two runs allowed. He did his job.
  • Scoreless innings from Josh Sborz and Ian Kennedy, to keep the Angels in single digits for the game, so hey, that’s something.
  • Texas got us all worked up and excited in the first inning, with a Nate Lowe three run home run and a David Dahl sac fly accounting for four runs in the inning. Those sorts of big early innings get you anticipating more runs, contemplating the possibility of a blowout, and it makes one just that much more disappointed when the bats get shut down the rest of the way. They teased us.
  • A whopping six hits on the game. One of them was a two out ninth inning pinch hit double from Charlie Culberson, which is about as close to meaningless as any hit the Rangers will have this year.
  • This has been two unpleasant losses in a row. I don’t like that.
  • Josh Sborz topped the radar gun tonight for the Rangers at 96.8 mph. Ian Kennedy topped out at 94.6 and Jordan Lyles at 94.5. Yang maxed out at 91.2 mph. Like I said, he’s a command guy.
  • Nate Lowe continues to sting the ball — along with his 112.7 mph home run, Lowe had a 101.2 mph single and a 103.4 mph fly out. Willie Calhoun had EVs of 104.7 and 104.4, and they were each ground outs. He also had a 54.3 mph single. Isiah Kiner-Falefa had a 104.3 mph single.
  • The last couple of games have been rough. And not in the good way. I want a game tomorrow that doesn’t blow.