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G23: Texas drops one to Cleveland, 7-5

I’m getting ready to go out to tonight’s Ranger game, so I don’t have much time to write, but I do have a few memories from watching the game last night.
Home Run Derby! Cripes – for the second time this season against Helling, and I don’t know how many times, AND the second time in two nights, the leadoff guy for the other team had a home run. Juan had two, including one towering drive that looked from the camera angle that it was going out of the ballpark (of course, that wasn’t going to really happen). Juan hit his other into the Indians bullpen, which is where Lee Stevens hit one, too. The fourth was Rusty Greer who had his first of the season. The Indians also had four, including two by Roberto Alomar (the others by Lofton & Sexon).
Our pitching was a mixed bag. Helling was just “OK”, and Zimmerman continued to sparkle. Man, does this kid look good. However, we’re not seeing all that many of the other right handers now, so I start to wonder about burnout. Wetteland got another save, and is tied for the AL lead.
Royce Clayton had to come out of the game – he was scheduled for an MRI this morning (don’t know what happened), and the Dallas Morning News this morning said that he’s probably going on the DL. They also said that the Rangers don’t trust Shave to play the position for extended periods (we’re 1-3 with him starting SS this year), and were talking about making a roster move to bring up someone else. Hmm.. Could have used Bournigal. :)
The Indians have such an impressive team, they seem to match up against us very well. If I wasn’t a Ranger fan, I’d probably be a fan of this team – they have a lot going for them.
Commentary by Jim Meeks:
The Rangers used 4 home runs – including a multi-homer game by Juan Gonzalez – and fantastic relief pitching to defeat the Cleveland Indians Friday.
Gonzalez, who prior to Friday had just one round-tripper, drove in 3 runs. Rusty Greer hit his first homer and Lee Stevens hit his 8th. The Rangers banged out 13 hits.
Rick Helling again pitched poorly. For the fourth time this month against Rangers’ pitching – the lead-off hitter hit a home run. This is the second time it’s happened to Helling. He was behind in the count on just about every hitter as he labored through this game, throwing an incredible 119 pitches in just over 5 innings of work. He gave up 4 homers, the 5th time this year he’s given more than one homer in a start.
Jeff Zimmerman continues to be the Most Valuable Player of this team. Coming out of the bullpen in the 6th inning, he stopped the Indians cold, allowing just one hit in his 2.2 innings of work and lowering his already microscopic ERA to 0.55. There are no words that can be used to describe just how well Zimmerman has pitched this year.
John Wetteland allowed 2 baserunners in the 9th but preserved the victory for Helling, who surely did not deserve the win.

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