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Thoughts on a 10-5 Rangers win

Rangers 10, Angels 5

Los Angeles Angels v Texas Rangers Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

Rangers 10, Angels 5

  • realize how pissed Angels fans must be about losing that game?
  • I can only imagine the raging that would be going on here if the Rangers had blown a game in such fashion.
  • Taylor Hearn, in his previous start, had his best outing of the year, going five shutout innings and helping bolster his case for being a starter. This wasn’t Hearn’s statstically worst outing of the year, but it wasn’t a good start. Hearn went four innings, allowing three runs, all of which came in the third courtesy of a Taylor Ward leadoff home run and an Anthony Rendon two run home run. Hearn walked three batters and struck out two.
  • Diving a little deeper, Hearn elicited just four swings and misses in 78 pitches. That’s not good. Hearn also gave up eight batted balls with an exit velocity of at least 100 mph, including four barrels. That is not good at all, particularly given Hearn allowed 15 balls in play total — when you’re not missing bats and over half the time you’re allowing a 100+ mph EV, that’s a big problem.
  • Hearn’s ERA on the season is 5.46, which isn’t good, but his xERA is 7.01, which is terrible. I was bearish coming into the season about Hearn as a starter, but he’s going to continue to get some leeway, particularly given there isn’t anyone in Round Rock kicking down the door to be in the major league rotation. But the early returns aren’t positive.
  • The bullpen kept things manageable once Hearn departed. Matt Moore continued his weirdly effective multi-inning middle relief role, striking out five in two shutout innings, lowering his ERA on the year to 1.93. As with Taylor Hearn, Moore’s xERA is over a full run higher, at 3.25, but hey, I think we’d all be happy with a 3.25 ERA from Moore in this role.
  • Brett Martin looked like he was going to be the goat after the GOAT homered off of him to lead off the 7th and break a 3-3 tie. It was Trout’s 42nd career homer off of the Rangers. The record for most home runs by one player against the Rangers is 43, by Reggie Jackson, who terrorized the Rangers in his career.
  • Dennis Santana gave the Rangers a 1-2-3 top of the eighth inning, setting the stage for the Rangers’ weird, improbable seven run eighth inning that gave Texas the come-from-behind win and that vexed Angels fans.
  • Corey Seager led things off with an opposite field bloop double, one of those poorly hit balls that no one can get to because of how Seager was being shifted against and that infuriates all of us when the other team does it. That put the tying run at second. That’s a good thing, right?
  • Adolis Garcia then hit a chopper to the right field side of second base, which, again, due to the way the Angels had shifted, Luis Rengifo could not field in time to get Garcia out at first. That didn’t stop Rengifo from throwing to first, however. His throw drew first baseman Matt Duffy into the baseline, which resulted in Garcia colliding with him as he ran through first base. The (late) throw hit off the heel of Duffy’s glove, caromed into Duffy’s face, and bounced away, allowing Seager to score.
  • That’s a rough way to lose a lead.
  • And to add insult to injury, Duffy had to leave the game and be replaced by Jared Walsh.
  • Jonah Heim pinch hit for Nick Solak and drew a walk, then Kole Calhoun, who was not pinch hitting (and who had hit a two run homer earlier in the game), drew a walk to load the bases for the slumping Nathaniel Lowe. Lowe worked the count full before smoking a line drive single into right center — a ball hit so hard that only one run scored. It was a slider, of course, but Lowe hit it hard and in the air, so progress.
  • Joe Maddon decided that was it for Ryan Tepera, and brought in Cesar Valdez to try to limit the damage. Huff went after the first pitch he saw and blooped a single the other way, bringing home two more runs to make it 7-4. After a Brad Miller U-3 moved Huff to second, with Lowe holding at third, the inning was topped off by some Angels clownball. Eli White stroked a hard hit ground ball into left field. Brandon Marsh charged the ball, presumably looking to either hold Huff at third or get him at the plate if Huff tried to score, simply whiffed on the ball, which bounded all the way to the wall. Eli White came all the way around to score, making it a 10-4 game, and all three Angels fans were home screaming at their TV.
  • The top of the ninth saw Josh Sborz come in, give up a run to make the Angels feel a little better about themselves, and then get Rengifo — whose error opened the floodgates — to pop out to end the game.
  • And Rangers fans went to bed happy.
  • Taylor Hearn toped out at 96.2 mph with his fastball and 95.4 mph with his sinker, averaging 94.6 and 93.3 mph on those pitches, respectively. Matt Moore hit 95.7 mph on his fastball. Brett Martin topped out at 95.3 mph on his fastball and 94.9 mph on his sinker. Dennis Santana hit 97.3 mph on his sinker and also had a 90.0 mph changeup, which is fun. Josh Sborz touched 98.0 mph with his fastball, and out of eight fastballs, threw them all between 97.1 mph and 98.0 mph, which is kind of impressive consistency.
  • Nathaniel Lowe’s eighth inning single was the hardest hit ball of the game, at 111.7 mph. Sam Huff had three singles in the game, with two of them having exit velocities of 108.4 mph and 105.0 mph. Kole Calhoun’s home run had an exit velocity of 102.5 mph, just barely edging out Corey Seager, whose first inning home run had a 102.4 mph exit velocity. Andy Ibanez had a lineout at 101.4 mph.
  • With the win, Texas guaranteed themselves a winning home stand, and will look to sweep against Shohei Ohtani before heading out on a ten game road trip where they will face every A.L. West team except Seattle.