At just about a third of the way through the season, the Texas Rangers are continuing to improve and have made it into the top half of the FanSided MLB Power Rankings. After being ranked 18th last week, the Rangers jump the spots to 15th in the league. This jump was made in large part due to winning three of four over the Boston Red Sox and taking the first game from the Chicago White Sox.
The highlights from this week are the impressive debuts of rookies Chi Chi Gonzalez and Joey Gallo. Gonzalez pitched 5.2 shutout innings in a win over the Red Sox and Gallo started his career off with a three hit performance, including a monster home run. Gallo followed his debut with a less impressive performance but facing Chris Sale is not an easy task for even the best left-handed hitters in the league. The team also managed to score 15 runs in the first game against the White Sox.
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The low points from the week are the two injuries the Rangers suffered. The first was Adrian Beltre who injured his thumb and was said to be out two weeks. The injury to Beltre was what triggered the promotion of Gallo. The other low point was the announcement that Josh Hamilton experienced a hamstring injury and will be out for four weeks. Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reported that Ross Detwiler will be activated to take Hamilton’s spot. There are several options of who could take over for Hamilton in left with the best bring inserting Leonys Martin in center and moving Delino DeShields to left. Once Beltre is activated, it will be interesting to see if the Rangers will move Gallo to left field to keep his bat on the lineup.
Taking a look around the rest of the American League West, the Oakland Athletics moved up two spots but remain in the bottom five. They have won seven of their last 10 games and have closed the gap to 5.5 games behind the Rangers. The Seattle Mariners dropped six of their last 10 but jumped five spots to 23rd overall. The acquisition of Mark Trumbo could help an offense that is currently hitting .236/.297/.690. The Los Angeles Angels are just 0.5 games ahead of the Rangers but are 3 spots higher in the rankings. The Angels jumped from the 15th spot where the Rangers are now up to number 12. The Houston Astros stumbled some this week but remain in the top 5 at the 5th spot. The Astros have won five of their last ten games.
The Rangers face a tough week as they will go on a six game road trip that will take them to play the fourth ranked Kansas City Royals starting tonight with Chi Chi Gonzalez on the mound. The Rangers will then travel to take on the Oakland Athletics Tuesday through Thursday. With Adrian Beltre and Josh Hamilton out of the lineup, the rest of the team will need to step up and keep this offense moving in the right direction.