After a terrific run against high-caliber teams like the Tigers, the Red Sox, and the Yankees, the Rangers have now lost consecutive series to the Toronto Blue Jays and the Cleveland Indians, two solid but unspectacular teams. This run of poor play has been characterized by poor starting pitching and fielding errors, signs of a lack of concentration. Coming up is a four-game series against Baltimore, a team that had struggled in recent years, but has started off the year hot. Hopefully the Rangers will be able to get it together and get some wins.
Some notes from the game:
1. Ubaldo Jimenez‘s last two starts were catastrophic, and overall he had a 5-plus ERA going into this game. Its very disappointing that the Rangers were unable to capitalize on his struggles the way other teams have, managing just two hits off him all game while striking out 6 times. Ubaldo is a former All-Star, and did seem to have his curveball working well for him this game, but still: two hits?
2. Yu Darvish was his usual self, getting a ton of swinging strikes, and managing 11 strikeouts total. He again walked too many batters (4), and again looked pretty hittable when hitters were able to make contact. However, he was better than his four earned runs would indicate; one was unearned, due to an Elvis Andrus throwing error, and another scored after getting on base when Kinsler lost an infield fly ball in the sun. Darvish seemed visibly frustrated with the strike zone, especially in the inning where he gave up his two earned runs off an Astrubal Cabrera double.
3. Michael Young once again led the team in runners left on base, which included an appalling groundout with bases loaded. That’s all.
I’m really hoping to have something more positive to report next game report. With any luck the Rangers pitching will regain some of their dominant form against the Orioles, and the Rangers hitters will take advantage of the hitter’s park that is Camden Yards, and get some runs on the board. And other good things will happen or whatever.