ST1: Rangers crush Royals in Spring Opener 13-3

Well, today was the day that the season started. Oh, the season opener isn’t until about a month from now. And there were a few intrasquad games earlier this week. But given that I write something about all the games (well, about 95% of them), the season really started for me today, since I have to now write about the games again. Like most off seasons I think I’m going to have these grand plans realized of writing multiple times a week about what’s going on. If I’m feeling particularly lofty in my goals, I think I’m gonna write like Jamey Newberg or Joey Matschulat – yeah right. :) But I do enjoy talking about the games, so here goes another season. My 12th since I started this site in December of 1998.
My wife and kids were out at the Dallas Arboretum today, so I had the house to myself – for most of the game. I sat down with my battery operated portable radio (cool that game 1 was on the radio), and was playing “MLB 10: The Show” on my Playstation 3 at the same time, so it was baseball overload. The Rangers were the visiting team here, and as such batted first. The first inning was fairly uneventful, except for an unearned run that Rich Harden gave up.
The unearned run was helped along by Jarrod Saltamacchia, who hit a runner trying to steal second. It then allowed the guy to go to third, who scored not long after that. Dave Barnett commented that he hoped that was just “first spring game” issues, and not a larger problem, as the throw was way off the bag, apparently. But Salty made up for that in the next inning when he walloped a three run home run.
Later on in the game, Matt Brown (our Rule 5 guy) hit another three run home run. That wasn’t the only way we scored. Julio Borbon got on, stole second, was pushed to third by a Michael Young groundout, and then scored. We also had run scoring doubles (Vlad Guerrero plating Mike Young). That hit by Guerrero was his first hit and RBI in a Ranger uniform. That STILL seems weird to me, as I’ve been following Guerrero since he was in Montreal.
Colby Lewis came in and handed me a big bottle of “shut up juice” by pitching a perfect inning. Yeah, it’s just spring game 1, but it sounded impressive on the radio for sure.
Another notable was the appearance of Alexi Ogando, who if you’re reading this site know has been trapped in legal immigration hell for the last few years and couldn’t pitch. This was his first appearance as a Ranger since he was drafted I think 5-6 years ago. He struck out his first batter, and went on to pitch a scoreless inning.
All told, our pitchers (seven of them) tossed a great game. Of the three runs the Royals scored, two of them were unearned, and all told, the Rangers pitching gave up just seven hits in nine innings. Not bad, not bad at all. Colby Lewis was perfect, and Tanner Scheppers was as well. Doug Mathis had the worst performance, giving up three hits and the lone earned run in his two innings of work. Everyone else gave up just one hit (Harden, Snyder, Ogando, Strop). It was a really well pitched outing by our staff.
Can’t say the same for the Royals. The Royals threw five pitchers out there, and none of them escaped unscathed. Kyle Davies started (5H, 4ER), and he was followed by former Ranger Robinson Tejeda (4H, 2ER), Philip Humber (4H, 1ER), Anthony Lerew (5H, 2ER), & Matt Herges (3H, 4R, 3ER). Of course when the Rangers have 13 runs on 21 hits, you’re going to see numbers like that.
Take a look at the linked box score, you can see all the carnage. It was really nice to have a baseball game to listen to. Had I been outside, I would have had a beer, but I enjoyed the hot dogs and the pink lemonade I had while the game was on.
Oh, and finally.. Victor Rojas has left MLB Network to go back to play by play calling. I wish Vic had stayed here. No offense to Dave Barnett, but I really REALLY liked Victor Rojas. In time, I’ll probably like Dave too, but I liked Vic’s way of saying what he felt. Plus Vic remains a friend, and I’ll never forget how he contacted me years ago when he first got the Rangers job. So good luck to you personally Vic. But your new employers? The heck with ’em. :)


  1. RedRaider says

    Long time reader of your blog (starting my 4th year reading) and happy to see ya back for another season. What a great overall performance by the team for that all-important first spring training game!