This one had all the makings of a Sunday game where the Rangers would carry a slim lead into the late innings only to see them kick away a ball to allow a few runs to score and the bitter taste of defeat to flood our mouths but Texas did a couple of things that they haven’t done enough of this season to secure the win.
After leading 1-0 through the middle innings, the Rangers broke out for three runs in the top of the 7th and didn’t stop scoring from there with a run in the 8th and two more in the 9th. How do you stop a shameful close loss? Just keep piling on.
In addition, the pitching for Texas was pristine with Minnesota held off the board, and that included three hitless innings from Taylor Hearn out of the bullpen. The defense was also solid which allowed the hurlers to keep tossing zeros.
Obviously you’re not going to shut out an opponent every day but there have been many games just like this one that went the other way for Texas this season. Today, they were able to keep their worst Sunday afternoon tendencies at bay.
Player of the Game: Major kudos to Kohei Arihara who was blasted out of the big leagues last season but decided to stick it out stateside and pitch for Round Rock all year only to eventually get another shot with the Rangers this month.
After a couple of serviceable outings, Arihara had his best big league appearance with six shutout frames on just four hits against a team in the thick of the playoff race.
Up Next: This felt like a series finale but the actual finale takes place tomorrow evening with LHP Cole Ragans set to pitch for Texas against RHP Sonny Gray for Minnesota.
Monday’s first pitch from Target Field is scheduled for 6:10 pm CDT.