DETROIT, Mich. — If I would have told you that the Texas Rangers would beat the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park in 3 out of 4 games you would have undoubtedly told me just how wrong I was. However, that is EXACTLY what happened.
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Texas entered the 4-game series in 4th place and 7.0 games behind first place Oakland Athletics and after the series are sitting in 3rd place just 5.0 GB the A’s and are back at .500. The Rangers scored a combined 35 runs while pitching only allowed 15. The offense came alive during the start of the 11-game, 11-day roadtrip and it couldn’t have happened at a better time.
After a 4-game losing streak, the Rangers decided to have a “Players Only” meeting on the 18th. It seemed to work as they beat the Toronto Blue Jays 6-2. However, Texas dropped their next game against the Seattle Mariners only turn around the next day and win.
In Thursday’s game Yu Darvish finally had the run support we’ve all been waiting for to get his 5th career first-start win against the Tigers. Newly added catcher Chris Gimenez had a career-high 4 hits helping the Rangers win it 9-2 and giving the Texas Rangers a 2-game win streak. Texas followed that up by losing Friday night’s game 7-2. Are you getting whiplash yet?
Even with that loss there was hope. Rookie right-handed pitcher Nick Martinez took the mound on Saturday and proved why we should NOT call him a rookie. Martinez and youngster Rougned Odor were highly impressive in Saturday’s 12-2 win against the Tigers.
Nick Martinez earned his first career win tossing 6.0 innings, giving up only 8 hits and one earned run while walking one batter and striking out two. Martinez stays so calm, cool and collected while on the mound no matter what the situation is that Twitter was buzzing about the 23-year old.
The youngest player in MLB is also one of the most exciting players to watch and happens to play second base for the Texas Rangers. Rougned Odor is merely 20-years young, but plays old school style ball and doesn’t know he’s not supposed to be this good. On Saturday Roogie recorded a career-high with 4 hits, 2 RBI and 2 triples. Yes, TRIPLES. According to Elias Sports Bureau Rougned Odor is the first player under 21 to have 4 hits and 2 triples in one game since Hall of Famer Rogers Hornsby did it on June 28, 1916. Also noted by Elias is the fact that Rougned Odor is the first player younger than 21 to have 4 hits and 5 RBI in one game since Hall of Famer Al Kaline (4 hits, 6RBI) on April 17, 1955.
Veteran righty Colby Lewis got the win on Sunday with his final line of 5.2 IP, 5 H, 2 R/2 ER, 5 BB, 2 SO. Someone forgot to tell the Rangers offense that they were up against Detroit Tigers’ ace Justin Verlander as they scored 9 runs in his 5.1 innings pitched. Among those who didn’t realize they should fear Verlander was Michael Choice who homered in his first career at-bat against him, helping the Rangers win 12-4.
The Texas Rangers not only needed this win to stay a contender as our own David Cash pointed out here, but to keep the team morale high heading into a 4-game series at Minnesota Twins. The Rangers have certainly given us many reason to doubt them; however, I think it can be argued that they have also given us many reason to remain hopeful about the remaining 112 (hopefully a few more over that).
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