Yoenis Cespedes provided the only run of the night on a 3rd inning solo blast, and Dan Straily and two relievers made it stand up, as Oakland handed Texas their first 1-0 home loss since June 27th, 2004. Roy Oswalt was the winning pitcher for the Astros that day.
Fresh off his 130-pitch marathon through the Detroit lineup last Thursday, Yu Darvish looked a lot like he usually looks when he doesn’t have “it”. He made it through 6.0 innings — on 101 pitches — but wasn’t nearly as sharp as we’re accustomed to seeing in 2013. He did surrender just the 1 run on 5 hits, but he posted 3 walks and only 56 of his 101 pitches (55.4%) went for strikes.
Even despite all this, after the game Darvish insisted he didn’t experience any adverse effects from his last start. On being taken out before the 7th inning, he said, “I wanted to keep pitching.”
Acknowledging Darvish’s off night on the bump, the Rangers still only trailed by 1 run. For almost the whole game. At home, facing Oakland’s 5th starting option — who possesses fringe-average stuff on the hill — and the Rangers managed three whole singles on the night. None of the runners reached 2nd. The team left two men on base in 9.0 innings of offense.
At least tonight we don’t have to complain about them being bad with runners in scoring position.
Regardless of how you want to paint it, since Sunday night’s offensive barrage against Detroit, Texas has scored 2 runs on 9 hits, and have drawn 2 walks — in 2 games. That’s not going to get it done.
The loss moves the Rangers to 29-17 and for the 2nd night in a row they cede a game in the standings to the A’s.
In tomorrow’s series finale, Ross Wolf will be making his Major League debut as a starter in wake of the news that Nick Tepesch came down with a blister. Jarrod Parker and the A’s will be going for the sweep.