Unfortunately last night’s game mirrored the game from the night before, when we were leading 5-0, but the Twins came back to win it by rallying in the 6th inning. Except last night, we were winning 4-0 at one point, and then the Twins came back to win it by rallying in the 6th inning. The final score was 5-4 Twins.
Kevin Millwood was pitching for us last night, with battery mate Pudge Rodriguez. And he seemed to have pretty good stuff for the first 4 or 5 innings. When we went into the 6th inning, we were leading 4-1. Then the Twins hit 2 doubles back-to-back, bringing the score to 4-2. Millie was able to get 2 outs after that run scored, but the Twins promptly responded with 2 more runs on 2 more hits, tying the score up at 4-4. Great.
Wash pulled Millwood and brought in Darren O’Day. O’Day gave up a single to center field, which Marlon Byrd came up with cleanly and fired to Pudge at home plate. But Pudge couldn’t catch the ball, and the go-ahead run slid across the plate, bringing the score to 5-4 Twins. Now, if this were any other catcher, Pudge would be catching flak from the announcers, the fans, the reporters, and everybody else for “losing the game.” But this is Pudge
we’re talking about. He doesn’t mess up very often. (Well, at least we know he used
to not mess up very often.) And all of his hits were a big part of why we were winning in the first place. Everybody here just loves him too much to turn on him.
Besides, the Rangers could have rallied to get more runs in the bottom of the 6th, 7th, 8th, or 9th innings, after the Twins took the lead, but they just couldn’t get anything done. They also had opportunities early in the game to get some more runs, but they let those slip by. Marlon Byrd led off the 2nd inning with a double, but was stuck at 2nd base all inning. Then later Marlon hit a triple with one out in the 5th, but they couldn’t bring him home. Poor Marlon had a pretty good game, the Rangers just weren’t able to make anything of it! There were 6 total Rangers left on base during this game, and the bottom line is that the Rangers couldn’t produce.
The Rangers won the first game in this series and lost the next two. So now, they have to win the game tonight if they want to split
the series. And they shouldn’t have split this series. They should have won
this series. There’s no way that we will be able to catch up with the Angels if we don’t start beating the teams that we know we can beat. I mean, Justin Morneau hasn’t even been playing during this series, and they’re still
beating us! The one-two punch of Mauer and Morneau can be pretty devastating, but without half of the “M & M boys,” they shouldn’t be doing this much damage.
Things of note:
*Hank Blalock worked his second walk since the All-Star Break last night! I’m very proud of you Hank!
*Last night, Wash pulled Julio Borbon from the game (who was DHing) after 3 at-bats and replaced him with… Andruw Jones?? Seriously?? And, of course, Andruw was 0-2 in last night’s game. Borbon has been doing a fabulous job of getting on base, and then stretching that into extra bases by stealing at least once. Let the kid play!
*Nelson Cruz comes off the DL today, and Julio Borbon is the most likely candidate to be sent down to AAA. It would only be for a couple of weeks, since we can bring him back on September 1 (when the MLB goes from the normal 25-man roster to the expanded 40-man roster). But the Rangers still have some baseball to play before September, and I don’t know if we can afford to lose Julio right now. He’s the only player in the past 56 years to have multiple three-steal games over the first eight games of his career. The kid is a firecracker! I personally think they should send down Andruw Jones. He doesn’t seem to be doing much for us up here anyway. Just my opinion.
Tonight’s pitching matchup:
Our Derek Holland (6-7) against Anthony Swarzak (3-6). Even though Derek has a losing record, I feel pretty confident with him on the mound. He’s won 3 out of his last 4 starts, including a complete game shutout in Anaheim. He was pretty shaky earlier in the season, and I was the first one to jump on the “let’s get rid of Derek Holland” bandwagon, zealously weilding my torch and pitchfork. But since his spectacular start against the Seattle Mariners on July 30th, he’s been a force to be reckoned with, and he’s really shown a lot of maturity. Swarzak is coming off his 3rd straight loss. I’d like to think that this Rangers team won’t let a team like the Twins come in and win a series against us in our own ballpark, but I don’t know what their deal has been these last 2 days.
My daily Chris Davis fix:
Days since CD has been in the majors: 46