G114: Rangers bounce back, beat Boston 6-3

When a knuckleball pitcher is on the mound, he’s either totally unhittable, or gives up a ton of runs. On this night, Tim Wakefield was both. For the first three innings, Wakefield put up donuts on the board. Then in the fourth, it came apart for him. Wakefield walked the bases full (two of them on 4 pitch walks). He went 2-0 on Ricky Ledee, and then Ledee jacked a pitch into the right field stands for a grand slam, and a quick 4-0 lead. Wakefield then promptly walked the next batter with four pitches, and was yanked. Those four runs were all we needed for the win, which was nice.
Rick Helling deserved it, after getting screwed in a 2-0 loss the last time out. Rick’s now alone in second place with wins in the AL, and is in third place in ERA with 3.61. I’m glad Rick is pitching this well – if he keeps it up next year too, he’s in for a great payday as his contract is up after the 2001 season. :)
Gabe Kapler was the other big story of this game. He broke Mickey Rivers’ 24 game hitting streak, and now stands alone in the Ranger record books with that hit. In watching the hit, it was the kind of play that Nomar Garciaparra always makes – a little part of me wonders if Nomar didn’t intentionally let the ball go under his glove, knowing what it meant to Kapler.