The Rangers rejiggered their starting rotation to put Yu Darvish third, and Matt Harrison fourth. It was explained as a way to keep Darvish on the same number of days rest. I think it’s more to break up the two lefties in the rotation. Still, no matter what the reason, Yu Darvish took the mound in game one of the Tigers series that started on Thursday night in Detroit.
He’s still walking too many people, but he pitched more like the guy we thought we’d be seeing. His line was 6.1 innings pitched, two hits, one run allowed, five walks, and five strikeouts. Not liking all the walks, but the two hits was a big improvement. He had an excessive number of pitches for 6.1 innings as well (121). A lot has been made that he’s thrown more pitches in a game a lot over in Japan, but I’m not buying it. He’s throwing too many pitches. Walks need to come down. Still, he got the job done, and that was the bottom line. I couldn’t see him pitch, this was a radio game for me, but it sounds like he was pitching much better than before. He’s also 2-0, so this is good. He’s definitely getting better with each start.
Offensively, I missed the big 8th inning, as I was putting my son to bed at the time. I really wish there was TiVo for Radio, darnit! Anyway, the offense was spread out again, with a large number of hits. The Rangers had 19 hits. Every Ranger had at least one hit. In fact, just two of them (Beltre, Hamilton) had one hit. Most everyone was 2 or 3. :)
Mike Napoli continued his power surge with another home run – his fourth or fifth game in a row with one now? Still have a bit to go to get to Kevin Mench’s team record, though. Cruz, Torrealba, & Kinsler had doubles. The remaining 15 hits were all singles.
I’m kind of tired tonight, so I won’t go into the specific details of the offense from the box score. But it’s nice to see everyone get into the act. But, more importantly…
The Rangers won in bloody Detroit! Gotta love that.
Offense aside, win in Detroit aside, Napoli’s home run aside.. I’m glad to see Yu Darvish improving. I think I liked that most of all.