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Thoughts on a 4-1 Rangers win

Rangers 4, A’s 1

Texas Rangers v Oakland Athletics Photo by Michael Urakami/Getty Images

Rangers 4, A’s 1

  • Let’s give it up for Rangers ace Martin Perez, who is currently second in the American League in ERA, trailing only Justin Verlander.
  • Perez had one bad inning, but even that inning ended up being not as bad as it could have been. The fourth inning started with a Chad Pinder single and a Sean Murphy double, putting runners on second and third with no one out. After a K and a line out, Perez walked Elvis Andrus on a 3-2 pitch to load the bases, then threw a wild pitch that brought home the lone A’s runner of the game. A groundout ended the only inning in which the A’s really threatened.
  • That fourth inning represented half the hits and half the walks that Perez allowed in seven innings of work. He dropped his ERA to 1.60 and his xERA to 2.54 on the year.
  • Perez isn’t blowing guys away — he had six strikeouts and generated eight swings and misses. But what he is doing is locating his pitches — particularly his sinker and change up — exquisitely. Perez is throwing his sinker primarily arm side, and doing a great job locating it on the edge of the strike zone. His changeup, meanwhile, has been his most effective pitch — it generated five of his eight whiffs against the A’s — and he’s been able to locate it down and arm side. It looks like the sinker, but fades such that it generates a swing and a miss or weak contact.
  • The Rangers offense, meanwhile, decided to make it as exciting as possible by doing nothing most of the game. The Rangers loaded the bases with one out against Frankie Montas in the second, but scored just one run, via a two out bases loaded walk by Andy Ibanez. The Rangers didn’t even get another runner to second base again until the seventh, when Adolis Garcia led off the inning with a double, and was left stranded at second.
  • The breakthrough finally came in the ninth. Jonah Heim’s one out single set the stage for Garcia to double again, scoring Eli White, who pinch ran for Heim. Nathaniel Lowe then put the icing on the cake with a home run to give the Rangers their final margin.
  • Other than the two Garcia doubles and the ninth inning hits, the only Ranger hits for the day were a pair of Kole Calhoun singles. It was a flat night for the offense. Fortunately, the pitching was good enough that the offense didn’t have to do much.
  • Martin Perez topped out at 94.6 mph on his sinker. Matt Bush touched 97.7 mph on his fastball. Joe Barlow’s fastball hit 94.9 mph.
  • Adolis Garcia had a 107.0 mph double. Jonah Heim had a 106.5 mph error, as well as a 100.2 mph single. Kole Calhoun had a 103.1 mph single. Nathaniel Lowe’s home run was 102.6 mph off the bat. Corey Seager had a 101.5 mph lineout.
  • Let’s keep this going, shall we?