One night after an impressive start by C.J. Wilson against the Blue Jays went wasted due to a lack of offense, Colby Lewis won a 6-2 decision against the Mariners. Last night against the Blue Jays Wilson pitched 7 innings giving up five hits, 2 walks, 9 strikeouts and no runs in an eventual no-decision. The Rangers lost the game due to a lack of offense, with the team combining for five hits, four walks and one run.
After a disappointing offensive showing over the first three games of the season, the Rnagers had to change something and it worked for them tonight against the Mariners. Vladimir Guerrero and Nelson Cruz combined to go 5 for 8 with three RBI’s. One of Cruz’s RBI’s came off a home run against Jason Vargas in the third inning on a fly ball to left field.
The other three RBI’s in game came off the bats of Joaquin Arias, Elvis Andrus and Josh Hamilton. In the sixth inning Arias singled scoring Nelson Cruz and moving Chris Davis to 2nd base. Then Elvis Andrus singled on a line drive which scored Chris Davis. In the bottom of the 7th inning Josh Hamilton doubled which allowed Micheal Young to score from first base.
The Rangers have gotten 2 quality starts out of the three up until tonight’s game only equating to one win, which was an opening day walk-off thanks to the bat of Jarrod Saltlamacchia, whom is now on the 15 day disabled list. In tonight’s game Lewis pitched 7 innings giving up five hits, four walks, with three strike outs and one earned run. In last night’s game Wilson actually had a better line, with no runs given up, less walks an more strike outs, although he received the no-decision due to the lack offense.
Out of four games so far this season Taylor Teagarden has received the pitchers on the last three games. The last two being somewhat without another option since Saltlamacchia is on the 15 disabled list with back muscle spasms. The Rangers did recall Matt Treanor from Triple A Oklahoma City to take the place of Saltlamacchia, although he has not appeared yet in the last two games. Other than the shaky start by Harden, two nights ago where 13 men reached base on something other than a hit, Teagarden has done quite well controlling the pitchers.
The main thing the Rangers need to get figured out is center fielder Julio Borbon’s bat, considering he is 0 for 16 so far to start the season. Borbon is barely not considered a rookie, but this should be his first full season in the big leagues. Although that may not be the case if he doesn’t get his hitting firguredout. New hitting coach Clint Hurdle has a lot of work to do to get Borbon hitting.
Coming into spring training the Rangers shuffled around the outfield after the lose of Marlon Byrd to the Chicago Cubs. They placed Borbon in center field and batting leadoff, which is a pretty tough combination for any player. The Rangers should give him time to work out the kinks before they make a move at center field.
The Rangers face off against the Mariners tomorrow with first pitch being at 2:10 csttime. The Rangers will sendMatt Harrison to the mound for his first start of the season to face Seattle ace Felix Hernandez whom took a no-decision on opening day. The game will be broadcast live on Fox Saturday Baseball.