G54: Millwood strong; Rangers beat Boston 5-1

After going 1-2 in the Bronx, I don’t think anyone was looking forward to Boston too much, because you could quite easily see another repeat of a 1-2 series, to come home 2-4. We’d then hear all the pundits (Randy Galloway mostly) whine about how we couldn’t beat the good teams. They’d have a point mind to some extent, mind you, but I wouldn’t want to hear all of that.
So with some trepidation (and no HD feed) on Friday night I sat down to watch the Rangers take on Boston. Kevin Millwood was taking on Brad Penny. Penny’s OK, but not someone to be totally afraid of. And the Rangers weren’t. At least not right away. This was a pretty good pitcher’s duel through the first four innings. Neither team could get past the zeroes that the starters were putting up.
Until the fifth. The Rangers hit Penny for several runs, (five in all), after a play that Julio Lugo probably should have gotten to. Had he done that, I expect that most of the runs that inning would have never scored. I’m speaking of the three run home run that Ian Kinsler got shortly after Lugo’s missed play (which had a visual response from Penny on the mound). The Rangers plated four in the top of the fifth, and that was pretty much all they needed, despite tacking on an additional run in the sixth. That was it from us scoring wise, we were up 5-0 after six. We actually didn’t have a ton of offense. Just eight hits in all, three of them by Chris Davis, who seems to be getting more hits, even if he’s still striking out way too many times. There was also two hits by Marlon Byrd, and one each by Kinsler (his HR), Saltamacchia, & Andrus. One Davis’ hits was a double, but everything else aside from Kinsler’s homer was a single. So the fifth was well timed.
Turns out we didn’t need all of them anyway. Kevin Millwood was pretty good yet again, going seven innings (plus three batters in the 8th) on 117 pitches. Seven hits and four walks, but allowed just one unearned run. We had no double plays, so this was a case of Millwood getting out of it himself. He really deserves more than 5 wins at this point. He’s been way better than his record indicates.
One down, all we need is one more of the remaining two games and we’ll have a 3-3 road trip. :)