clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Thoughts on an 8-4 Rangers win

Rangers 8, Dodgers 4

Los Angeles Dodgers v Texas Rangers Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

Rangers 8, Dodgers 4

  • I hope you didn’t turn the game off in the top of the first inning, after the Los Angeles grand slam.
  • Or if you did, I hope you turned it back on pretty quick.
  • The Rangers have yet to win a game this year when they were trailing after eight innings. That has led to the occasional criticism that they lack comeback ability. That’s a rather facile claim, I think, but setting that aside...Texas was down 4-0 five batters into this game. They had gotten beaten up the previous two games by the Dodgers. It was a getaway day game. Texas was missing Corey Seager and Adolis Garcia from the lineup. They were starting Brad Miller, for goodness sake.
  • It is the type of game where you would think a team that lacked comeback ability, that for whatever reason could not rally when backed into a corner, would fold.
  • That, of course, did not happen. Instead, Texas cut the lead in half in the bottom of the first, took the lead in the second, and never looked back.
  • So, Martin Perez. Do we rip him for being awful early and putting the Rangers in a bit hole? Do we praise him for keeping the Rangers in it and giving Texas six innings? Yes?
  • He was a mess in the first inning. He wasn’t locating, was laboring, looked like circa 2018 Martin Perez which, if you’ve blocked out that season, isn’t a good thing. With two on and one out in the first, he walked Chris Taylor to load the bases. Okay, it set up a double play, and maybe he was pitching around Taylor to get to Max Muncy, who hasn’t been good against lefties this year.
  • Except he threw a couple of balls to Muncy, got a strike, then gave up a no-doubter for a grand slam before everyone had gotten fully settled back in their seats after the national anthem. 4-0, on the heels of a couple of bullpen sapping games that saw Brad Miller have to pitch two innings yesterday.
  • The makings of a disaster. Maybe Perez could limp along, get to, I don’t know, the fourth, see if Texas could avoid the ignomy of a position player pitching again.
  • A funny thing happened on the way to a third straight loss, though. Perez settled down, got his command back, and excelled over the final five innings. Per the final five innings he allowed just three hits and a walk. He even fanned six batters.
  • Bruce Bochy went with Brock Burke, Aroldis Chapman and Will Smith for innings 7-8-9. You can argue it is was overkill with a four run lead, but the Dodgers are good, Chapman and Smith hadn’t pitched for a few days, and under the circumstances you probably wanted to err on the side of overkill to keep the lead from slipping away.
  • Texas scored in the first, second, third and fourth innings. Then they got one hit in Innings five through eight, but that didn’t matter because they had all the lead they would need.
  • Every starter got a hit except Travis Jankowski and Josh Smith, and even they each drew a walk. Every starter had a run or an RBI except for Josh Smith.
  • It’s a game to make you feel good about things heading to Houston for a three game set.
  • Martin Perez maxed out at 93.3 mph on his sinker, which averaged 91.7 mph on the day. Brock Burke threw eight pitches, all fastballs, and topped out at 96.5 mph. Aroldis Chapman hit 103.4 mph with a sinker. Will Smith reached 92.2 mph with his fastball.
  • Leody Taveras had a 104.9 mph double. Ezequiel Duran had a 104.8 mph double. Brad Miller had a 101.3 mph single. Jonah Heim had a 100.0 mph double.
  • That’s a 7-2 homestand coming out of the break. 62 games left. The Rangers need to go .500 in those 62 games to win 90. I think they can do it.