Never Ever Quit, Never Ever Quit, Never Ever Quit! This is so true for the Texas Rangers throughout their whole 2016 campaign and that continued tonight.
The Texas Rangers are an MLB best in 1 run games during a season as far as winning percentage at .767 at 33-10. This team thrives daily on never quitting as well as having a lineup in which any player can provide a game winning hit.
Tonight was Elvis Adrus’s turn to take charge and both tie the game and place himself on 3rd base to be the winning run. I’ll try not to jump ahead of myself, let me set the scene for you real quick. The Texas Rangers are facing the Houston Astros and it is in as close a game as possible in to the 9th inning with the Astros up 2-1. With 2 outs, last nights walk-off hero Rougned Odor was at the plate and aggressive as ever.
As good a player as Rougned is, he still has some plate discipline to learn. With an 0-2 count he swung at a pitch down and in the dirt that got away from the Astros catcher allowing Odor to make it to first. The Rangers took a risk and had Odor steal 2nd, he almost thought the throw was wild and was nearly caught off of the bag, BUT HE WASN’T.
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Then with Elvis Andrus at the plate he belted a triple into deep center field that finally hit the ground just in front of that goofy hill at Minute Maid Park. Andrus was shortly walking home after Jurickson Profar hit a ground ball into left field. The Rangers would score 2 in the top of the 9th to add to the solo “from the knee” home run trademark swing that Adian Beltre had earlier in the game. A swing that has been patented and should be the statue pose of Beltre when it comes time for that.
Relief pitcher Tanner Scheppers was brought on in the bottom of the 9th for his first save opportunity since 2013 and he wrapped up the comeback win with a 1-2-3 inning. This team added to their one run record and their commanding lead on the rest of the division.
“we don’t really give up until the last out or last pitch.”- Elvis Andrus
Elvis Andrus after the game said, “we don’t really give up until the last out and last pitch.” This is so true and is obvious that effort does not stop until after that 27th out, it is just part of their mindset of approaching what they can control and nothing more than that.
It is worth mentioning that starting pitcher A.J. Griffin had one of his deepest outings since April 26th going 7 innings while allowing 4 hits, 2 earned runs, with 7 strike outs and those 2 runs being solo home runs. Griffin is 6-0 all time vs the Astros and said he doesn’t care who gets the win as long as we win.
The magic continues with this team and maybe it’s time to stop calling it magic since they have been doing it all year, what do you think? The Texas Rangers now have a 10 game lead on the Seattle Mariners and have notched their magic number to win the division down to 8 games.