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Thoughts on a 4-2 Rangers win

Rangers 4, Jays 2

Toronto Blue Jays v Texas Rangers Photo by Tim Heitman/Getty Images

Rangers 4, Jays 2

  • Ah, a win…those feel good, don’t they…
  • Another Quality Start from Dane Dunning, even with First Inning Dane Dunning making at appearance. Dunning retired just one of five batters he faced in the first, with the four batters he didn’t retire all putting up exit velocities over 100 mph. The batter he did retire, though, was Whit Merrifield, the second batter of the game, who hit into a GIDP to erase leadoff hitter George Springer.
  • Bo Bichette then hit a blast to right center that it looked like Adolis Garcia would catch…only he seemed to get distracted by the weird angled wall in right center he was approaching, then had the ball carom off his glove for a double. A Vlad Jr single and a questionable throw home led to Bichette scoring and Vlad going to second.
  • This was one of those instances where the good fortune for the Jays in getting the runner in scoring position ended up being bad fortune. Daulton Varsho smoked a line drive to right field, hard enough that one would assume that the runner would be held at third. Didn’t happen, though. The slow Little Vladdy was sent, and Adolis Garcia threw a bullet home with so much time to spare that Jonah Heim could have watched a full episode of I Think You Should Leave. Dunning was out of the inning.
  • Things were generally fine for Dunning after that. He allowed a homer to Varsho in the fourth after the Rangers had hung three on the board, meaning it was a one run game, but otherwise things went smoothly for Dunning.
  • Dunning looked like he was going to pitch at least into the seventh before a seven pitch at bat by Bo Bichette with one out in the sixth, resulting in a ground out, followed by a 13 pitch walk by Vlad the Younger blew up his pitch count. He ended up at 89 pitches on the day, almost a quarter of them coming in those two at bats.
  • Josh Sborz handled the seventh and eighth and we are now at the point where we can be like, oh, Sborzy is in the game, and our collective buttholes unclench because Sborzy is going to get the job done. And he did, just to clarify.
  • Will Smith’s ninth inning was reminiscent of Dane Dunning’s first inning. It was scary and he gave up four really hard hit balls to start the inning, though only two of them went for hits. He struck out Santiago Espinal for the third out, though, so all was well and we got to be happy.
  • The game was a sellout, incidentally. Don’t tell Mac.
  • The Astros lost at Cincy for their third straight loss, dropping to 4.5 games back of Texas. The Angels were up 8-2 on the hapless Kansas City Royals and so I started looking at how long it has been since Houston was in third place this late in the season, but then the Angels blew the lead, took the lead back in the top of the ninth, and finally allowed the Royals to win on a walk off that was some Kansas City player’s first major league hit. So Anaheim is also 4.5 games back.
  • Remember how the Rangers were racking up runs the first two months and were doing that in part by a ridiculously high level of output with runners in scoring position? Well, that’s stopped. Texas is 0 for their last 20-something with runners on base. They didn’t have any hits in those situations again today. The runs came in a two run Josh Jung homer and solo shots by Jonah Heim and Corey Seager.
  • Jung had another home run according to the umpires on the field, but there was a review and it was determined that the ball, down the right field line, was actually foul.
  • Adolis Garcia, who has been in a slump of late, was 2 for 3 with a walk, so that’s a good sign.
  • And a win, that’s a good sign I think, too.
  • Dane Dunning hit 91.9 mph with his sinker. Josh Sborz’s fastball reached 96.6 mph. Will Smith’s fastball maxed out at 92.2 mph.
  • Corey Seager had a 106.6 mph home run and a 103.4 mph single. Josh Jung had a 103.7 mph exit velocity on his home run. Adolis Garcia had a 103.0 mph single. Jonah Heim’s homer had a 102.2 mph exit velocity. Marcus Semien had a 102.8 mph line out. Ezequiel Duran had a 101.0 mph single.
  • A win on a Saturday is very nice, and gaining a game on the rest of the West is even better.