The Texas Rangers lost again on Tuesday night in a similar manner as to Monday's loss. The offense established a lead, failed to build onto the lead, and then the pitching staff blew the lead. The Rangers have now lost five of the last six games and are in the middle of a three-game losing streak, their second of the entire season. There is not just one reason why they are losing these games, it is a combination of things happening that are causing these losses. The Rangers need to figure out what are these issues before they can go about fixing them. I have identified five issues that I have observed in my viewing of the games over the last week.
#1 Issue Affecting the Texas Rangers: RISP Regression
The Texas Rangers have been the best offense in baseball mainly because of their absurdly high batting average with runners in scoring position(RISP). They have spent most of this season with a team batting average over .330 with RISP. All other teams are at a .287 batting average or below. Regression was to be expected, but it has really come on since June 7th. The Rangers in the last six games are 10-49 with runners in scoring position. The first two games against the Angels they are 5-29. The issue against Tampa was not many opportunities. The issue against the Angels is a failure to take advantage of the opportunities they earn.
The Rangers do not do a lot of small ball. They do not bunt, steal bases, or lately have not been moving runners. They rank near the bottom of the league with just 36 stolen bases. Their entire offensive approach relies on being able to produce base hits to score runs. Lately, those hits have not been coming from players who had been productive in that situation. Six games in a 162 game season is just a blip. It does show a need to diversify their offensive approach. They do have athletes and it might be time to give them the freedom to steal bases. That would create more run-scoring opportunities and put pressure on opposing pitching staffs.