Regression to the mean is so much fun when it goes this way. Scott Feldman was perceptively the worst pitcher of the planet earlier this season. But, you know what? He wasn’t actually pitching that bad. His Fielding Independent Pitching (FIP) was always better than his ERA but no one could have imagined Feldman bouncing back like this.
After losing six straight games, Feldman has won six of seven partly thanks to some better luck but mainly due to the fact that he has been throwing a lot of strikes. He has walked only three people in his last seven games ranging 41.2 innings. Obviously, that isn’t the only aspect to being successful, and Feldman wasn’t exactly wild like Yu Darvish during his rough stretch, every little bit counts. Feldman has also seen more groundballs as well. All of it is coming at exactly the right time. Feldman, at this point, isn’t a fill-in. He essentially took Roy Oswalt’s spot and he will keep it until he falters.
Alexi Ogando came in for another save as Ron Washington is allowing Joe Nathan to rest up. Interesting how Washington is going with Ogando instead of Mike Adams – who came in for the final out in the eighth inning – for the ninth two nights in a row. This is probably to give Adams a rest too, as he only needed to face one batter. However, the fact that the middle relievers and long men got two more days of rest because of Feldman and Matt Harrison bodes well as they have been overworked for a while.
The Rangers offense was led today by Mike Olt and Josh Hamilton who had two RBIs each and two weeks ago no one would have thought that would be the case. Olt because he might not have even been a Ranger past July 31 and Hamilton because it looked like he would never hit again (OK, a little overreaction there.)
The Hamilton situation has gotten really dicey right now and I would think that this is the last we will see of Hamilton in a Rangers jersey. From Nolan Ryan to Ron Washington’s comments to Hamilton’s comments himself have been telling. The Rangers are frustrated with Josh and Josh probably does need a change of scenery.
Olt with an RBI on a single and a sacrifice fly was nice to see as he is still facing his first action above AA. We all knew that it would take time but to see him contributing this quickly shows why Jon Daniels was so slow to give him up for anybody.
The Rangers will go for the sweep on Sunday afternoon. It would be their first sweep since the middle of June when they swept the Astros and Padres in back-to-back three game series.