The Rangers were on the back foot again today as Max Kepler led off the game with a home run off of Texas starter Jordan Lyles. However, a couple of runs in the top of the second gave the Rangers a lead before Lyles coughed it up by allowing two Twins runs in the bottom of the third.
At that point, it looked like the game was going to be one of those high-scoring back and forth contests between two teams looking to put the finishing touches on defining this series.
Instead, neither team scored again until Jonah Heim tied the game in the top of the seventh with a solo home run just out of the reach of Byron Buxton in center field for the second dinger of his big league career.
As for Lyles, he improved upon allowing a combined 12 runs in 6 2⁄3 innings over his last two starts against Anaheim and Boston by allowing just the three runs in five innings on seven hits and two walks. Lyles was able to strikeout seven Twins before giving way to the bullpen.
Speaking of the bullpen, it was good for Texas again today. Brett de Geus, Taylor Hearn, and Josh Sborz followed Lyles and combined to toss five scoreless innings. The Rangers’ relievers combined to allow just three runs in 15 innings during this series with all of those coming in Monday’s loss.
The game remained tied until extras where the ghosts were out to artificially bring this one to a conclusion. The Rangers’ apparition found the plate in their half while the Twins’ specter was stranded in the tenth.
With the win, the Rangers have won yet another four-game set and sit just a game below .500.
Player of the Game: Why walk when you can jog?
Up Next: The Rangers head back home where they will get their first look at the archrival Seattle Mariners over the weekend. RHP Mike Foltynewicz is the expected starter for Texas while Seattle has not yet named who will pitch for them (maybe RHP Chris Flexen?) in the opener. Friday’s first pitch from The Shed is scheduled for 7:05 pm CT.