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G130: Rangers lose to Planet Zito 9-3, drop 8 back

Barry ZitoI bet Barry Zito wished Mark DeRosa had gotten sick, or that we had started Eric Young in right field tonight. More on that later.
Edinson Volquez started for Texas, and he had a really high pitch count; 91 through 4. He managed to navigate a few minefields, the worst was in the fourth where Volquez walked a couple, allowed three singles, but only let two in during the fourth (three overall). I guess it wasn’t that great of an outing when you look at it that way, but given how many guys were out there on the bags in the top half of the frames, it could have been a hell of a lot worse. Volquez was out after four, replaced by Josh Rupe. Rupe was a lot more effective. He needed just 8 pitches in his first inning. In fact, the rest of Volquez’ relief was fine, as they all shut out the A’s until the ninth, when Rick Bauer gave up a two run double making the score 5-0 and then Michael Young comitted a throwing error allowing a sixth run to score, ending Bauer’s time on the hill. CJ Wilson came in and finished the game for Texas, but not before making the ninth inning stick a whole lot worse, giving up three more runs to make it 9-0.
None of that really mattered though. We were up against Mr. Teddy Bear, who is about 150-2 when pitching against the Rangers. And he continued to make our guys look like soft hitting Teddy Bears because we had donut through seven (save for one walk). That was until Mark DeRosa came up in the bottom of the 8th and broke up the no hitter, singling to center field. OK, at that point I could root for the Rangers again. I never really root against them, but if you’re gonna be beat, at least you could have said “it was a no hitter”. :)
As it was, the entire team was shut down through eight plus innings except for Mark DeRosa who got a single. He also walked later. However, in the ninth, Zito faltered a bit, walking Gary Matthews, and then letting Michael Young reach on a fielder’s choice that got nobody out. Carlos Lee followed that up with a triple scoring Young & Matthews. That chased Zito from the game. Chad Gaudin followed, and allowed the third run on a groundout by Tex, scoring Lee. That was all we could put together.
The funny thing is I already had this paragraph written in the middle of the ninth after Matthews’ walk as if Zito was going to go the distance on a one hitter; I had to rewrite the bit above when we got a little life. :)
We lost the game 9-3, but it was’t as close as that. Felt like we should have had a zero in the runs column the way Zito pitched. And now we’re 8 games back with 32 to go. Doesn’t look good for the home eleven.

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