In the house that apparently Scott Stapp built, the Texas Rangers finally have something to celebrate in their storied-but-only-for-other-teams history at Globe Life Field.
Opponent no-hitters, World Series celebrators, and home run-record breakers have toasted to the building meant for Texas without the Rangers once getting their turn in their own house. Until tonight. This was the night that The Shed became home.
With a sellout crowd, the largest in the history of the place, the Rangers won the ALDS with a definitive sweep of the darling 101-win Orioles to punch their ticket to the ALCS for the third time in franchise history.
They did it their way with a relentless lineup that looks unbeatable when it is performing as it has since the flight from Seattle.
If this season has been a roller coaster, right now it is click-clack click-clack climbing to a rhythm that has seen bags packed and Rangers circling. When it’s been at its lowest and inertia has swallowed our hearts into our stomachs, it felt like the thrill was an impossibility to reach again.
But these Rangers have persevered. More so than even the most ardent among the throng tonight likely every believed they could. And now they’ve got a shot at getting back to the Fall Classic.
What a ride.
Player of the Game: It could be Corey Seager. He’s the best player on the field every night and he set a division series record for most walks with nine in these three games while also homering. It could be El Bombi Garcia who hit the monstrous two-out, three-run dong to break the Orioles’ backs. Maybe it’s Nasty Nate Eovaldi who looked like the May version of himself in seven innings of one-run ball as he produced the rarest of treats, a Rangers postseason gem.
But you know what, let’s shout out Nathaniel Lowe, who has been scuffling for weeks at the plate while dealing with something in the real world that would haunt any of us and tonight he put together one of the most extraordinary at-bats of the season when he worked Orioles’ starter Dean Kremer for 15 pitches in the bottom of the 2nd, just before the Rangers put up a bird-crushing five spot.
Lowe lined out in that at-bat but he set the table for a tuckered out Kremer to face the oncoming onslaught. Later, with the O’s grabbing their lone run to make it a 6-1 game, Lowe homered in the bottom of the 6th, his first at The Shed since August 18, and he immediately looked like the weight of the world had been lifted from his shoulders.
Good on ya, Nathaniel!
Up Next: Either the Twins come back and best the Astros and we see Joey Gallo and Thad Levine, or Texas takes on Houston in what is sure to be an absolute slobberknocker between two teams that have danced around a rivalry without having the October showdown to back it up. Well, that could become official very soon with Houston leading their ALDS series 2-1.
Silver Boot back on the menu?
No matter which team Texas faces, it will be at their building beginning Sunday, October 15 for Game 1 of the ALCS.