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G80: Rangers fall behind early, lose game 7-2

Friday’s game is the halfway point of the season. We head into that game at (wait for it) .500 again, after having dropped the finale of the series to Houston, 7-2. We fell behind bigtime very early, and were never ever in this game.
Millwood gave up a three run triple in the first inning up onto the giant hill of grass in center field, and then in the second inning surrendered four more runs. Kevin was just a mess. He actually threw five innings total, but his first two were so bad, it gave him a line that was bad even if you factor in the three scoreless innings he did pitch. All told, Kevin gave up twelve hits and three walks for seven earned runs. Raised his ERA over five (5.08) – just bad. The only positive to the pitching was that Josh Rupe, Jack Benoit, & Jamey Wright all had scoreless innings to follow, but it didn’t much matter at that time.
Wandy Rodriguez for the Astros threw gem of a game against us, and even if Kevin had given up just a few runs, it wouldn’t have much mattered. In his eight innings, Rodriguez only gave up a single run on five hits. The run that he did give up was in his last inning pitched on a single to Ian Kinsler. We were pretty much shut down all game. There was one surprise hit though – a double by Kevin Millwood. This ends NL Interleague for the season, and our pitchers did pretty well as a group with the stick.
Josh Hamilton & Milton Bradley were in the game, but neither factored into what little offense we did have, and Hamilton had to leave the game after the first inning when he was hit in the hand by a pitch. Anyone else having visions of him being elected to play in the All-Star game, but not being able to?
This ends the Silver Boot series for 2008. Every year someone writes about this – if you recall, the Rangers were making a big stink about getting out of the AL West and going to the AL Central to be more in tune with the time zone we’re in. That was apparently going to happen, and Tom Hicks let Bud Selig off the hook by accepting a guaranteed series each year against the Astros, keeping us with a lot of 9PM game starting times. This was supposed to become a big rivalry, but it hasn’t happened. I do like seeing us play the Astros, that part is nice, but the rivalry is a non issue. The most telling thing of all was the quote by Michael Young about the silver boot that the Rangers won (again on run differential, as the series was 3-3). Young said, “I could care less,” shortstop Michael Young said. “They can keep it for all I care.” That your “face of the franchise” player said that about the boot tells you all you need to know. As much as I like the Astros games, I think I’d rather be in the AL Central with more realistic starting times for my inter-division games.
Philly comes to down for the first time ever. My brother is flying in from Philadelphia, and we’re going to be at all three games. Yeah, I’ll be wearing Phillies shirts – it’s not often I get to see my home town team live. I’ll probably do the thing where I wear a Phillies shirt, and a Rangers cap. Probably won’t see too many of those in the park. :)

Comments

  1. Where are you sitting on Sunday? It’ll be the first game I’ve been to all year! I’m pumped but I just hope the weather holds up!
    (I’m on a different computer that’s not automatically signed on to my account and I couldn’t remember my username and password which is why I’m commenting anonymously)

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