The Rangers go to Seattle, and take on their toughest pitcher, Felix Hernandez. As is my custom, I refuse to call him “King Felix”. Again, if you’re a Mariners fan, or are Mariners media, that’s fine. But I’m tired of seeing Rangers media give him the accolade by calling him that. I refuse. Anyway, while there’s no denying he’s a great pitcher, the Rangers don’t seem to be dominated by him. Oh, he’s beat us, sure – but we’ve beat him our fair share. Probably more than we should, considering how dominating he can be. That’s good, IMO – great pitchers should beat you, but when you can hold your own with them, you’re doing good yourself.
It’s not like Hernandez was awful this game, but he did have a bit too many hits. He went 6.2 innings, allowed ten hits with two walks. Four runs scored on his ledger, although one was unearned. Struck out five. He took the loss, and is now 1-2 early in in the 2013 season. Few too many hits, but the overall numbers weren’t bad. Just not good. It was enough, that’s for sure. The Rangers did work him, as he threw 113 pitches in that 6.2 innings. A bit high, so that’s always good to see.
This was to be Matt Harrison’s spot, but since he went on the DL, the Rangers called up Justin Grimm. As I’ve said about Grimm before, his debut game was outstandingly good. Every once since then has been mostly “meh”. Today was kind of the same. Four innings pitched, and NINETY-TWO pitches. Way too many. He walked three, allowed five hits, but just two runs in his four innings. That’s what I mean, the bottom line here (runs) wasn’t bad. But the other surrounding numbers were too high (number of pitches mostly). Don’t have a ton of confidence in him.
Someone I do have confidence in followed Grimm, and was great. That’s Smokin’ Joe Ortiz. He threw two innings, allowed NOTHING, and struck out two. Liked this guy in the spring. Love him so far in the season!
Scheppers, Ross, & Nathan followed that. Ross allowed a run, but both he and Scheppers got a Hold, and Nathan his third save. Decent pitching tonight. I wouldn’t say steller because of Grimm, but I’ll take just three runs allowed over 9 innings any day. Just need to cut down on number of pitches thrown.
Offensively, we had 11 hits – everyone except Moreland had at least one, and Kinsler, Beltre, & AJ had two. AJ also had a home run – a solo shot in the second. Cruz & Berkman doubled, and everything else was a single. But against Felix Hernandez, that’s a great performance.
A win is a win. Take it.