The Rangers got their tenth win in a row and Alexi Ogando picked up his third win in relief of Dustin Nippert who started in place of Rich Harden and only pitched 3 innings. In the three innings he only gave up two runs on four hits with four walks and 7 strikeouts.
Ogando now has appeared in three games with all of them being wins. He currently has a perfect record with a 0.00 ERA. So he is appearing to be a great fit in an already strong Rangers bullpen. Matt Harrison pitched the ninth giving up one run on two hits to pick up his first save of the season.
The main highlight of tonight’s win over the Pirates is the offensive output from the Rangers lineup. The Rangers were able to pick up 17 hits on the Pirates pitching and scored a total of 13 runs. Young led the offense with 3 hits and four RBI’s. Shortstop Elvis Andrus was right behind him with three hits and 1 RBI.
The one amazing part of it, is that Ron Washington decided to give Josh Hamilton a day off for precautionary rest. Earlier in the season there was the big stink about whether Hamilton’s past played into his health or if he is just injury prone. I truly believe that his past doesn’t affect his health or at least not a big impact on it. With that being said I not against giving him an occasional day off to keep him fresh because he is a perennial all star that the Rangers need in the lineup just about every day.
One good thing for Rangers fan is that even though Hamilton’s all star stock has been rising, he has decided that he will not participate in the Home Run Derby. I like the Derby, don’t get me wrong, but I do feel that it can affect a players second half. The reason being is that in the Derby you get so zoned in to hit home runs on pitches that are slower than batting practice and it affects your timing and your swing. So if Hamilton donesn’t feel that he should participate in the Derby, I agree because I would love to see a strong second half from him as the Rangers march on to the playoffs.