Category: Uncategorized

All-Star voting

As part of my membership in the Baseball Bloggers Association, here are my votes for this year’s All-Star team.

AL: all Rangers (surprise, surprise)

1B: Mitch Moreland (If he doesn’t make it, I won’t be too upset because he’s a rookie. But he’s pretty stinkin’ great.)

2B: Ian Kinsler (Offensively he doesn’t really deserve it, but defensively he does.)

SS: Elvis Andrus (I mean, come on, Derek Jeter?? Please. Elvis is soooo much better! Asdrubal Cabrera might give Elvis a run for his money, though.)

3B: Adrian Beltre (Just amazing defensively. Unfortunately, A-Rod has a lock on this, I’m sure.)

DH: Michael Young (Michael certainly deserves it, but Big Papi might win in the votes.)

Catcher: Yorvit Torrealba (But Joe Mauer will probably win.)

OF: Josh Hamilton, Nelson Cruz, and David Murphy (Josh is certainly going, and Nelly should go, but Murph probably won’t. He’s not flashy, so people don’t tend to notice his awesomeness.)

NL:

1B: Albert Pujols (he’s just a stud, baseball-wise)

2B: don’t care

3B: don’t care

SS: don’t care

Catcher: Ivan Rodriguez (of course)

OF: Marlon Byrd, Ryan Braun, and Andrew McCutchen (Marlon because of the Rangers connection and because he’s just awesome, Ryan Bruan because of the amazing effortless catch he made in the last All Star game, and Andrew McCutchen just because I like him.)

So if you haven’t voted for your major league All-Stars, you should definitely do that ASAP. If you don’t know who to vote for, please feel free to copy my ballot. 🙂 But no matter who you decide to vote for, just VOTE!

Now THAT’S what I’m talking about!!

Last night’s victory came after a very short losing streak for the Rangers – only 2 games – but I still breathed a huge sigh of relief. Those first 2 games that the Rangers played against the Tigers were just BAD!!

Let me back up a little bit. Before the Rangers started this short 3-game home stand against the Tigers, they had finished their road trip against Tampa Bay and the Cleveland with a 6-1 record.

No, that’s not a typo. I said 6-1. On the road. Flippin’ awesome!

And that 6-1 record included a 4-game sweep of the Cleveland Indians, who have the best home record in all of baseball. Not too shabby.

But then the Rangers proceeded to come home and play like a Little League team against the Tigers in game 1 of the series. The final score was 13-7, so at least the Rangers got 7 runs. But it was still just a hard game to watch.

My dad and I had tickets to game 2, so I was really hoping the Rangers could turn it around on Tuesday night. Plus, they had fireworks scheduled for after the game, which never happens for a weekday game. It had to be a good omen, right?

Wrong.

I thought Monday’s game was hard to watch, but Tuesday’s game was just a never-ending slaughter. And it took absolutely FOR-EV-ER!!

It ended up that I wasn’t able to work it out to go in to work late on Wednesday morning, so I finally had to leave the stadium at 10:00, and they hadn’t even started the 9th inning yet!

Plus that hard seat had really done a number on my backside, and the 5 healed fractures in my pelvis and tailbone were screaming at me. I was hurting pretty bad. Seriously, I’m still sore 2 days later.

Anyway, I ended up missing the fireworks, which I was REALLY looking forward to. And my team got pummeled, and I was in pain, which made me pretty cranky.

I knew that Alexi Ogando was going to pitch last night, so I was cautiously optimistic.  But I still didn’t know what to expect.

When I turned on the game last night, we were still in the top of the first inning, but the Tigers were already leading 1-0. Uh-oh. No bueno.

On a side note, I was also surprised to hear last night that the Rangers suddenly decided to fire their new hitting coach Thad Bosley. Tom and Dave kept talking about what a great guy he is, but a team doesn’t decide to just fire someone in the middle of the season for no reason.

There’s something fishy going on, but I’m proud of the Rangers for not airing all their dirty laundry. Of course I’m curious about what happened, but it really isn’t anybody’s business.

They decided to bring up Scott Coolbaugh (the hitting coach for the Rangers’ AAA affiliate) to become the Rangers’ hitting coach. Tom & Dave kept pointing out that “there’s no ‘interim’ in front of his title. This is now Scott’s job.”

Okay, fine. Back to the game.

Although the Rangers were down 1-0 through the 2nd inning, they were able to get 4 runs in the bottom of the 3rd inning. And they kept adding on runs until finally, we were leading 7-1.

Then Darren Oliver put 2 guys on base in the top of the ninth, so Wash called in Feliz. And Feliz doesn’t do well coming into an inning with men on base, so they both scored.

But that was it. We still won the game 7-3! Woohoo!!

Alexi Ogando still does not have a loss this season, and he’s 7-0 with a few no-decisions!

Oh, speaking of Alexi Ogando, I have a funny story. Well, at least I thought it was funny. If you want to quit reading here, I’ll totally understand.

The last time my dad and I went to a game together (before this past Tuesday, of course), it was against the Chicago White Sox and Alexi Ogando was on the mound.

When Alexei Ramirez came up to bat, I said to my dad, “Oh, hey, it’s Alexei versus Alexi!” I made sure to accentuate the “ayy” sound in Alexei and the “ee” sound in Alexi.

“Let me guess, ” Dad said. “Are they spelled the same but just pronounced differently?”

“No,” I said. “Alexi Ogando’s name is spelled just with an i, and Alexei Ramirez is spelled with an e i.”

We both waited a beat, then at the exact same time we sang “E I E I OOOOO.”

It was hilarious! But maybe it’s one of those things that doesn’t translate into print. You had to be there. Anyway, it was awesome, trust me. 🙂

The next game I’m going to will be Monday, June 20 against the Houston Astros. That also happens to be Nelson Cruz bobblehead night! Yay!!! 

Overall Rangers’ record: 35-28

My Rangers’ record: 6-2

Days ’til my next game: 11

Cleveland Massacre

Umm, did you guys see that game last night? It was pretty awesome.

After winning 2 out of 3 in Tampa Bay, it was incredible to see the Rangers stroll into Cleveland yesterday and continue their recent road success.

Before last night’s game, the Rangers were 11-15 in road games on the year. I’ve heard it said that as long as  team can take 2 out of 3 at home and go .500 on the road, they’re golden. Well, the Rangers are a bit under .500 on the road, but there’s still a lot of baseball left to be played this season.

And with last night’s win, the Rangers are still only 12-15 on the road so far. But the amazing thing about last night’s win is that before last night, Cleveland had a 19-6 home record.

So basically, nobody goes into Progressive Field and embarrasses the Indians on their own turf.

But the Rangers did. 🙂

And they did it using a spot starter because the regular starter, Matt Harrison, is dealing with a blister.

Can you tell that I’m proud of my boys? Maybe I’m over-playing the significance of last night’s game, but dang I’m happy!

How about Endy Chavez?? 4 for 4 with a stolen base and 2 runs scored last night. Wow.

And last night wasn’t an anomaly. Endy is hitting .415 since being brought up on May 14. Not to mention his solid job in center field.

When Julio Borbon comes off the DL on Monday, it’s a pretty safe bet that Endy won’t be going anywhere.

TR Sullivan mentioned last weekend that the Rangers might be looking to move David Murphy. When I read that, warning bells started going off in my head. “Uh-uh, they’d better not move Murphy!! They need to get rid of Julio!”

Then yesterday, I read an email from Jamey Newberg that proclaimed,

“From John Perrotto (Baseball Prospectus): ‘The Rangers would consider trading outfielder David Murphy for pitching help, though they would prefer to deal center fielder Julio Borbon.’

WOOHOO!!!!!!!! Finally!!!

Yes, Julio is speedy on the bases and in the outfield. And he sometimes has a hot bat. But the kid has no arm!! A strong throwing arm is kinda important for a center fielder. Or for any outfielder, really.

Speaking of outfielders with great arms, how about Indians’ right fielder Shin-Soo Choo?? Freakin’ A, dude! He’s got a cannon strapped to his shoulder! He very nearly threw out Nelly Cruz last night from deep right field. I would love to see that guy in a Rangers’ uniform.

I’m excited to see tonight’s game. Hopefully the Rangers can continue their offensive prowess, and we’ve got Alexi Ogando on the mound tonight. Alexi is 5-0, and I want him to get to 6-0.

By the way, who would have guessed that Alexi would become one of the best starting pitchers in the Bigs? He was a decent bullpen guy, but he is absolutely lights out as a starter.

My next game will be on Tuesday against the Tigers, and I found out last week that they’re having fireworks for some reason. Sweet!!

I’ve already put in notice so that I can come in to work late on Wednesday. I don’t want to take any chances. I am going to see those fireworks!

Days ’til my next game: 4

Overall Rangers’ record: 31-26

My Rangers’ record: 6-1

Ranger Resurgence

First of all, I should probably mention the fact that Mlblogs.com has recently switched over to WordPress. So the website may look a little bit different to you, but there should be a WHOLE BUNCH of cool new things that I can add later. Once I figure out how it all works, of course.

Anyway, did you freakin’ see the Rangers’ game last night?? It was epic!!!

The first 8 innings or so were kind of ho-hum. The Rangers and the Royals were tied at two runs apiece.

The excitement started in the middle of the bottom of the 8th inning, when Ian Kinsler dove to catch a line shot that would have fallen into shallow right field otherwise. The Royals had a man on 2nd base who could have easily scored if that ball and gotten through, but instead it became the 2nd out of the inning. Thanks, Ian!

Then in the top of the 9th, the Royals brought in legendary closer and birthday boy Joakim Soria. But Soria didn’t have such a great birthday. Texas was able to get another run across thanks to a pinch-hit RBI single by the always-amazing Elvis Andrus, and they took the lead 3-2. Woo hoo!!!

With Neftali Feliz on the hill for the Rangers in the bottom of the 9th, I was feeling pretty good about the Rangers chances. But then Feliz did some very un-Feliz things.

The very first pitch he threw in the bottom of the 9th was belted for a solo homer by Royals’ rookie Eric Hosmer, tying the game at 3. Uh oh.

Then Neffy walked Jeff Francoeur (who I really wish the Rangers had been able to keep, BTW). They took Francoeur out of the game and put in Jarrod Dyson to pinch run.

And Neffy promptly picked him off.

Then he walked the next guy, Billy Butler. The Royals put Mike Aviles in to pinch run for him, and Neffy promptly picked him off too. Nice!

I don’t like the fact that Neftali is walking guys, but at least the got the outs afterwards. The Royals say that he balked, but it didn’t look like a balk to me. And the most important thing was that there were 4 major league umpires on that field, and none of them called a balk either.

So the game went to the 10th inning, and Neftali Feliz came out to pitch for the Rangers again. But no one from either team scored in that inning, so they went to the 11th.

In the top of the 11th, Adrian Beltre hit a 2-run single to center field off the Royals second-to-last bullpen guy, Jeremy Jeffress. That put the Rangers on top 5-3.

After Jeffress allowed those 2 runs, he was pulled from the game and the Royals brought in the last guy from their bullpen, Everett Teaford. Even if the Royals had been able to come up with 2 runs in the bottom of the 11th, they wouldn’t have any more options for pitching help. They’d have to go to their starting rotation.

But the Royals weren’t able to come up with 2 runs in the bottom of the 11th. The got 1 run, mainly due to defensive indifference, but it wasn’t enough and the Rangers won 5-4.

Whew! That was a nail-biter!! The Rangers really seem to be figuring things out now, and with Josh Hamilton and Nelly Cruz both on rehab assignments and due to come back to the Bigs soon, I hope it just gets better from here.

The Rangers only have a 23-20 record, which if you’re math-deficient means that they’re only 3 games above .500. But it doesn’t matter because they’re still 1 1/2 games ahead of the Angels (22-22), which means the Rangers are in 1st place in the AL West. I’ll take it!

Days ’til my next game: 4

Overall Rangers’ record: 23-20

My Rangers’ record: 4-1