G41: Cruz homer late lifts Rangers to 6-5 win in Houston

Well, Vicente Pidente went on the DL on Friday, and while I don’t think anyone was jumping up and down because of that.. They probably (well, Jamey was) jumping up and down over the fact that Derek Holland was making his first major league start. I think it’s a safe bet to say that Padilla won’t be here next year, and some of the stud kids probably will get a very real shot at the slot (maybe not #2, but a rotation spot for sure).
So we send Derek Holland to the hill to start the game. Derek has that Tim Lincecum look to him – kind of the “Hey, wait a minute – is this guy legally allowed to drink?” (Elvis Andrus isn’t, actually – hehe). Anyway, Holland looked very much as advertised through five. I mean, he took a shutout into the sixth inning. He gave up a three run home run to Lance Berkman in the sixth – which is no shameful thing, Berkman’s a good hitter. But it ended his outing just one out away from a technical quality save. That would have been a nice chestnut in his cap for his first major league start. Still, a pretty impressive outing for first time out. He’s supposed to get one more start – if it’s anything like this, it might be hard taking him out. Wonder if Pidente will get moved in July if our kids are still smokin then.
Jason Jennings followed Holland, and gave up the other two runs that Houston got. Two hits and a walk led to those two runs. CJ Wilson, Darren O’Day, & Frank Francisco (fresh off DL) got work, and Frankie with the save.
Offensively, we were led by home runs again. We had three of ’em. One by Elvis Andrus in the fourth, another by Jarrod Saltamacchia (two run shot) in the sixth. Other than the final home run by Nelson Cruz, it was nine singles. Three by Elvis Andrus, who went 4-5 with an RBI, and two runs scored in this game. Michael Young was also on this game, going 3-4. So the left side of the infield accounted for seven of our twelve overall hits. Nice going guys.
But, as I said, the game was won by a Nelson Cruz home run to right. It was impressive power, as he was jammed inside, and still jacked the ball over the right field fence for the winning run.
That’s one up in Houston, a place we win fairly regularly at.