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49-33 - Silver Boot’s luster dims as Rangers drop opener 5-3

The Peagle is powerless against Houston

Houston Astros v Texas Rangers Photo by Tim Heitman/Getty Images

The Texas Rangers scored three runs but the Houston Astros scored five runs.

As far as omens go, trailing 1-0 one pitch into the biggest series of the season thus far was certainly sinister. That’s what happened tonight for Texas as Jose Altuve took Rangers starter Jon Gray deep moments after everyone had nestled into their seats at The Shed.

Tonight, the Rangers tried to bury the bad mojo by taking a lead but the runs came off solo home runs as Texas didn’t do much with their opportunities to ignite rallies. Even though Houston starter Ronel Blanco gave up four hits and four walks, the Rangers had just four at-bats with runners in scoring position and didn’t find that big hit in any of them.

Meanwhile, Gray didn’t have the kind of outing that Texas was surely hoping for as he couldn’t hold a 3-1 lead heading into the late innings with Gray curiously going away from his slider in two-strike counts before seeing Houston spray hits off fastballs in consecutive scoring innings with one run in the 5th and the go-ahead damage of three runs in 6th.

There was no late innings magic as the Rangers just aren’t that team.

And that’s that for June and a month that the Rangers will likely be glad to put past them. Not that it was a season-cratering disaster or anything — Texas went 14-13 in June and still lead the division by four games — but it certainly didn’t live up to the standards set in the first two months of the season, especially with the bats over the last couple of weeks.

Hopefully the Rangers welcome May days in July after this June swoon.

Player of the Game: I’ve heard a little bit of chirping that Josh Jung was undeserved as the starting American League third baseman for the All-Star game. Tonight, Jung homered again and again showed better-than-expected prowess at the hot corner. He’s good. He deserves it.

Up Next: More Rangers and Astros to open July with RHP Nathan Eovaldi next up for Texas against RHP Hunter Brown for Houston.

The Saturday afternoon first pitch from The Shed is schedule for 3:05 pm CT and will be aired on BS Southwest.