G76: Rangers bounce back against Angels Tuesday, win 9-5

Well, for the first time in a couple of years, I headed out to the Rangers game to retake the pictures for my seat selector feature here on my site. First done about ten years ago, it’s something I’ve always had fun with, but it is a heck of a lot of work. Once I get the pics all sorted out, I’ll update my online feature, and post a story about it.
Anyway, when that was over (I started at 5:10PM and finished at 6:48PM, downed 60oz of Gatorade, and two bottles of water during all of this), I sat down to watch the Rangers game. It’s only my third game of the season so far, but I always like just sitting in the last row of the upper deck with my Palm to score the game and my headphone radio. I enjoy those. If the park wasn’t so far away, I’d probably go to more. Anyway..
After an insanely long first two innings (an hour), I came to the conclusion that I’d be there for awhile. The Rangers scored three in the bottom of the first, and then gave them right back in the top of the second. It was 3-3 after two. Neither pitcher had much of anything on the mound, and both escaped some situations that would have made the three a much larger crooked number on the scoreboard.
Joe Saunders is a pretty decent pitcher, but not here. Before the game, one of the radio guys (get well Eric!) said that Saunders was something like 0-5 with an ERA in the 12’s in our ballpark. This game didn’t help. Saunders was hit pretty hard, giving up eight runs on five walks and six hits in just 3.2 innings. He was pretty bad. In fact, in the first inning, I really thought we were going to score six or seven and get him out of there with less than an inning pitched, but he escaped that.
Our offense was propelled by the home run. We had five of them in all. Four off of Joe Saunders. Kinsler led off the game with one. Marlon Byrd had a two run shot later in the first inning. That felt good, as a lot of ours have been solo home runs lately. What felt better though was the three run home run Byrd also had in the fourth inning, which was followed up by a solo shot by Nelson Cruz. David Murphy also added a solo shot in the seventh. The home runs accounted for seven of our nine runs.
Pitching wise, I have to say that Scott Feldman was pretty pedestrian, bordering on awful the first two innings. He completely failed in the shutdown inning, he just looked bad. Which is what makes innings three through six more impressive. After 57 pitches in the first two, Scott settled down, and pitched extremely well in 3-6. He needed about 60 pitches to get through the other four innings, and allowed no more runs. At one point he retired a ton of guys in a row – I forget how many. In fact, had his pitch count not been at 116 after six innings, he probably would have come back out – he was looking QUITE good.
Problem is our pen made the game seem closer than it really was. Going up 9-3 in the ninth, CJ Wilson coughed up a couple of runs. One was unearned, but still. 9-3 would have felt a lot better than 9-5, even though both resulted in a win, and us getting back to just one and a half games out of first.
Still kind of bummed at how far we fell in June, but the win helps ease that a little.