Texas Rangers sweep Tigers, fail to break .500

Joey Gallo has started off the season with a pair of jacks and 7 RBIs. Photo Courtesy: Darryl Briggs
Joey Gallo has had a monstrous season with 35 home runs and 65 RBIs. Photo Courtesy: Darryl Briggs
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By Wiley Singleton

With Joey Gallo surging and the pitching looking strong, the Rangers are positioning themselves for a wild card spot. The Rangers must take care of business against teams that are no longer making a postseason push. Six weeks left in the season and it’s go time!

8/14 – Game 1 vs Tigers: Joey Gallo hit a homer in this solid offensive performance. The Rangers managed five runs off of the Tigers starter Michael Fulmer. Fulmer was excellent last time he faced the Rangers in Texas. Martin Perez was solid for the Rangers. Ian Kinsler was ejected by Angel Hernandez for looking back at him after a series of questionable calls. Alex Claudio and Matt Bush got the job done at the end and the Rangers took a solid game one win. 6-2.

8/15 – Game 2 vs Tigers: The Rangers abused the homer to beat the Tigers into submission. Robinson Chirinos, Mike Napoli, and Joey Gallo all hit a long ball. AJ Griffin gave up one run and lasted five innings. His pitch count is still limited due to his recent return from the DL. Tony Barnette gave up two runs in relief. Justin Verlander was touched up for five runs in this game. There are rumors Detroit have interest in moving Verlander, considering his huge contract and their place in the  division. Rangers win another comfortable game 10-4.

8/16 – Game 3 vs Tigers: Cole Hamels got off to a rough start in this game. He managed to last six innings, despite giving up four runs in the first three innings. Hamels has looked excellent since his return from the DL. The Rangers continue to rely on the homer for offense. Mazara, Beltre, Andrus, and Gallo all went deep. It looks great when it works. Andrus ends the day with four RBI. Nomar Mazara had three RBI.  Rangers win 12-6 to sweep the Tigers. The Rangers had a chance to play the worst team in the AL to regain a winning record.

8/17 – Game 1 vs White Sox: The White Sox touched up Tyson Ross. Austin Bibens-Dirkx got the win after he was solid in relief. Matt Bush and Alex Claudio made things close at the end, but the Rangers would ultimately win this close game. Brett Nicholas was solid in this game, earning three RBI, two hits, and a homer. DeShields, Choo, and Beltre all had multiple walks. Mazara crushed five RBIs, and was the majority of the offense along with Nicholas. 9-8.

8/18 – Game 2 vs White Sox: This heartbreaker largely game down to a play in the 8th inning. The game was tied 3-3 when Nicky Delmonico launched a ball to deep right field. Nomar Mazara tried to catch it, missed it, and fell down clutching his knee. The ball was in play, and Delmonico went on to score the game winning run on a inside the park homer. Mazara remained in the game, and DH’d the following day. Andrew Cashner turned in a quality start. James Shields was decent in his outing. The game was a brutal 4-3 loss for the Rangers. At least Nomar did not severely hurt himself.

8/19 – Game 3 vs White Sox: The Rangers faced off against 2011 World Series hero Derek Holland. Holland was shelled, and applauded loudly for his efforts. Martin Perez got off to a horrible start, but managed to eat up six innings. The Rangers got an enormous lead with a plethora of homers as usual. Rougie Odor had two, Napoli had one, and Choo had one too. Joey Gallo walked three times. Mazara had two hits. Odor and Napoli combined for ten RBIs. Brad Goldberg and Dylan Covey were both ineffective relievers in this game. Rangers win big 17-7.

8/20 – Game 4 vs White Sox:  The Rangers continued the trend of choking in games that would not only change the momentum of the season, but get them above .500. The Rangers spent all day leaving runners on base and looking perplexed against the fourth worst ERA team in the league. This game was scoreless until the 4th inning, when AJ Griffin had a tough at bat where two pitches very close to the zone were called balls. Griffin walked the hitter and eventually surrendered three runs. Griffin looked good in all innings but the fourth. Barnette, Grilli, Bush, and Claudio were all flawless. The inconsistent offense only got one homer, a two out shot by Rougie in the bottom of the ninth. The ninth inning began with two Rangers reaching base on walks. Jeff Bannister pulled Delino DeShields to have Shin-Soo Choo pinch hit. After a tough 1-1 strike call, Choo hit into a double play. The Rangers have fallen back below .500 and face the team they need to beat most this week: The Angels…

Upcoming Schedule – All Times Central
8/21   @Angels    9:07 p.m.
8/22   @Angels    9:00 p.m.
8/23   @Angels    9:00 p.m.
8/24   @Angels    9:07 p.m.
8/25   @A’s           9:05 p.m.
8/26   @A’s           3:05 p.m.
8/27    @A’s          3:05 p.m.