Rangers might've lost their chance at division title after hapless sweep by Mariners

All of Texas' misfortune culminated in a backbreaking sweep at the hands of Seattle.
World Series - Arizona Diamondbacks v Texas Rangers - Game Two
World Series - Arizona Diamondbacks v Texas Rangers - Game Two / Carmen Mandato/GettyImages
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The Texas Rangers had a real chance last weekend to make a statement against the AL West-leading Mariners. Texas was only a couple games below .500 and a strong series against Seattle would have closed the gap in the division and put the team in a position where a strong run of play could have resulted in Texas reclaiming their place atop the AL West.

Unfortunately, it was not to be. Not only did the Rangers fail to capitalize on the opportunity to make up ground on the Mariners, but Texas got trounced en route to a sweep by Seattle that may have effectively ended any hope of Texas winning the division this year.

Then they followed that up with a 14-2 loss at the hands of the New York Mets on Monday night. Yikes.

The Rangers getting swept by the Mariners is not a small deal, even in June

Look, all of the old adages about baseball being a long season and a lot can happen between now and the end of the year are true in this case. Obviously the Rangers haven't been eliminated from the playoffs and it is far from a lock that the Mariners are going to stay hot until the rest of the season. Save your angry emails, all hope is not lost and the Rangers could very well turn things around.

However, spotting the Mariners three games in the division just from one of the few opportunities you get to play against them and determine your own fate is absolutely brutal. Just like that, Seattle has an 9.0-game lead in the AL West to help weather any speed bumps they encounter and it is a lot harder to make up that kind of ground especially with potentially tough series coming up against the red-hot Mets, Royals (who are better than you think), Brewers, and Orioles soon. Oh, and it isn't like the Rangers are particularly healthy right now, either, if you have been living under a rock for the last two months.

All of a sudden, the seven games that Texas has against the Mariners in September hold a lot more weight to them. While the Rangers should be grateful they will at least have that opportunity late in the season, it may not matter after their 1-5 start against Seattle in addition to the hole Texas dug itself into through the middle of June.

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