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Thoughts on a 3-2 Rangers win

Rangers 3, Rays 2

Tampa Bay Rays v Texas Rangers Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

Rangers 3, Rays 2

  • Thats four in a row, if you’re keeping track.
  • This is the type of game it feels like the Rangers have been on the wrong side of a lot this year. One team gets a couple of runs early, then sees the bats quiet down. It looks like it still might be enough, but then there’s a homer to tie it up. Bats continue to be quiet, and in the ninth, the comeback is finally completed when the winning run scores in annoying fashion.
  • Really, that sounds like a game the Rangers have lost a half dozen times this season, doesn’t it?
  • Dane Dunning continues to baffle. He gives up a run in the first and another in the second, the shuts Tampa down for the next five innings. He even got out of a runners on second and third, one out situation in the fourth with a strikeout followed by a fly out.
  • Seven innings, five hits. Just four Ks, and 11 swinging strikes, but he also issued just one walk, to the second batter of the game. I don’t know how he keeps doing it, and I keep figuring he won’t keep doing it. But so far he is.
  • A scoreless eighth by Jose Leclerc, and a scoreless ninth by Aroldis Chapman. Both men did their job, kept the score tied, setting up the possible walk off.
  • It was largely uneventful offensively for the Rangers, aside from the Ezequiel Duran two run bomb in the sixth. Robbie Grossman had singled immediately ahead of him, one of two hits he had on the day, so I guess Bruce Bochy knew what he was doing, putting Grossman in the lineup.
  • All setting the stage for the ninth. Josh Jung doubled off of former Ranger Pete Fairbanks to lead off the inning. Josh Smith came in to run for Jung. Adolis Garcia fanned, then Nathaniel Lowe smoked a grounder to the right side that went for out number two, but moved Smith to third base.
  • We don’t ever care about a runner moving from second to third with two outs. He’d score from second on a hit most likely anyway, can score on an out because there are two outs already. An empty advancement. Yeah, sure, maybe there’s an infield single, an error, maybe the ball gets away at the plate and the runner can score from third, but how often does that happen?
  • Not often. But on a Monday night against the Rays it did. Pete Fairbanks threw a 100.4 mph fastball low and away, in the dirt. It went past Christian Bethancourt to the screen. Smith scored. The Rangers win. Everyone is happy.
  • That’s four in a row. And it’s remarkable how natural winning seems when the team you’re rooting for starts winning again.
  • Dane Dunning reached 92.8 mph with his sinker. Jose Leclerc hit 95.6 mpg with his fastball. Arnold Chapman touched 102.8 mph with his sinker.
  • Nathaniel Lowe had groundouts at 109.4 mph and 100.0 mph. Josh Jung had a groundout at 108.6 mph and a double at 106.5 mph. Leody Taveras had a 105.4 mph groundout. Ezequiel Duran’s homer was 105.2 mph. Robbie Grossman had a 101.4 mph double and a 100.0 mph single. Mitch Garver had a 100.7 mph line out.
  • 3.5 games up on Houston now.