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Thoughts on an 11-5 Rangers loss

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Angels 11, Rangers 5

Texas Rangers v Los Angeles Angels Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images

Angels 11, Rangers 5

  • Well, that was pretty terrible.
  • And it didn’t even offer the silver lining of, well, the Rangers scored five runs, so the offense must have been pretty decent. No, no it wasn’t.
  • Hyeon-jong Yang got the start against Anaheim and was lit up from the get go. The first hitter he faced, Justin Upton, hit a home run off of him to lead off the bottom of the first — and it was a 109.8 mph barreled rocket that Statcast put at 430 feet. He also gave up a 109.4 mph barreled shot from Juan Lagares in the inning, and when Juan Lagares is slapping you around, that’s a really bad sign.
  • Juan Lagares also had 105.3 mph and 102.7 mph exit velocity singles yesterday, so maybe he was just seeing the ball really well. Or maybe Hyeon-jong Yang and Brett de Geus were bad. One or the other.
  • Anyway, Yang allowed two more runs in the second, and then settled down and had a 1-2-3 third, giving us a faint glimmer of hope that things weren’t going to be awful. It was a false hope.
  • The bottom of the fourth inning probably prompted a lot of folks to go to bed, what with it being a West Coast game and all. Single-walk-WP-single-bunt single brought home two runs, and while Yang was able to retire Kurt Suzuki on a fly out after that, Chris Woodward had seen enough and went and got Brett de Geus. de Geus got David Fletcher to hit into a fielder’s choice for the second out, allowed a 100+ mph single to Upton, and then faced Shohei Ohtani.
  • I talk about the two out, three run home run being such a big deal, but really, when Ohtani came up to the plate, it was a 6-1 game. The Rangers are, of course, spunky and they don’t quit and they never say die, but you know, when you’re down 6-1 in the fourth inning on the road, its generally church. So whatever happened with Ohtani wasn’t going to be a big deal in the context of the result of the game.
  • That didn’t make what happened after that any better. Ohtani homered off of de Geus. But he didn’t just homer...he hit the type of missile that makes Adrian Beltre cry “oh shit!” from the dugout. The type of missile that leaves jaded announcers in awe. The type of missile that makes those on the other side pull a Ron Burgundy and say, “Heck, I’m not even mad. That’s amazing.”
  • So, as y’all may know, I spend way too much time on Twitter. It is perfect for my ADD brain, allowing me to jump on and check on my feed whilst doing other more important things, so I don’t have to worry about missing something critical like the Rangers making a waiver claim or Joe Manchin making folksy remarks about the filibuster or a cute cat doing something cute. Generally speaking, throughout the day, whatever I’m doing, I’m also on Twitter, keeping my finger on the pulse of...well, on the pulse of whatever is happening on Twitter at that point.
  • (Like, I’ve checked it at least a half dozen times since I started this post).
  • The downside of that is when something bad or embarrassing happens involving your team, or someone/something you like. A couple of years ago a user named @maplecocaine tweeted, “Each day on twitter there is one main character. The goal is to never be it.” And as anyone who spends way too much time on Twitter can tell you, that’s quite accurate. Its also worth noting that there are sub-sets of Twitter that have their own main characters on a certain day or evening or whathaveyou as well that this applies to.
  • Last year in early August the main character was Chris Woodward, when everyone was dunking on him over the Fernando Tatis grand slam brouhaha. And understandably so. A few days ago it was Tony LaRussa for complaining about Yermin Mercedes swinging 3-0 on that Astudillo guy for the Twins whose first name I can never remember how to spell and who threw like a 48 mph pitch that Mercedes hit to the moon. LaRussa was mad and everyone made fun of him.
  • Having a stick up your butt about something because of unwritten rules is a good way to get ridiculed on Baseball Twitter.
  • Anyway, for a period of time last night, it was all about Shohei Ohtani’s home run. People tweeted gifs of it. People quote-tweeted gifs of it. Baseball people. Non-baseball people. The timeline was a flood of Shohei Ohtani stuff, and only Anthony Davis kicking someone in the dick kept last night from being an all-Ohtani, all the time experience on Twitter.
  • That’s not fun.
  • Anyway. de Geus was bad. Demarcus Evans came in and pitched the sixth and seventh, allowed no hits, walked a batter and struck out four, so that was good. Brett Martin pitched a scoreless eighth with 2 Ks and 2 hits. That’s fine. Then the Angels didn’t have to hit in the ninth because they were winning, and those are the rules, and so the Rangers didn’t have to have anyone pitch anymore.
  • As I said, despite scoring five runs, the Ranger offense wasn’t really good last night. There were just five hits — a single and a double by Nate Lowe, who also walked, a home run from Adolis Garcia, and singles by Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Charlie Culberson. The Rangers did walk five times as well, but other than Lowe’s walk there was one by Nick Solak and three by Khris Davis, so, whatever.
  • It was just not a great night all around.
  • Fortunately, this is just a two game series, so Orange County will be subjecting us to only so much misery before the team heads for Seattle, and a new brand of unpleasantness.
  • Okay, the Statcast data. Yang topped out at 91.2 mph. He doesn’t throw hard. deGeus hit 94.7 mph with his sinker. Brett Martin threw a couple of four seamers — yeah, surprised me too — and his fastest one was 93.6 mph. Demarcus Evans topped out at 93.4 mph with his fastball. And yeah, that’s not real hard, but he’s not a flamethrower — he succeeds because of an extremely high spin rate on his fastball and a really good slider.
  • Adolis Garcia’s home run was 109.0 mph. Nate Lowe had a 105.7 mph double. Isiah Kiner-Falefa had a 102.4 mph groundout. Willie Calhoun had a 100.0 mph lineout. And that’s it. I told you, the offense wasn’t impressive last night. The Angels had more 100+ mph exit velocities in the fourth inning than the Rangers had all game.
  • The Rangers finish up the series Wednesday with a day game. Let’s hope it goes better.