It was a Yu Darvish game. I’m getting the feeling when Darvish pitches that you used to get when Nolan Ryan pitched. You always felt SOMETHING was going to happen, and you started the game expecting to win it. So when Darvish got down 2-0 in the first inning, I was midly bummed. Not that I expected the “Perfect game” Darvish every time out. But I expected him to hold the line a little better early on.
However, that was the end of it, really, because after the first, he settled down. His first inning, the Sox had four hits. After that, Darvish allowed just a single in the second, and then nothing else hit wise until a home run by Dewayne Wise in the sixth. So I’m not sure what was up with the first inning.
The sixth had an interesting misadventure. Darvish was covering first, and the throw (that he caught) was in plenty of time for the out. However, he didn’t have his foot on the bag, and fumbled around trying to find it, never quite doing so. It led to immediate laughter from his teammates. Kinsler just smiled at him, and Elvis was mocking his attempts to get his foot on the bag. That was funny. What wasn’t funny was that right after that was when Dewayne Wise hit his home run. Had Elvis had his foot on the bag, the Sox wouldn’t have gotten the two runs they did that inning. That wasn’t funny.
That inning ended up being it for Darvish, as he was replaced by Tanner Scheppers, who also allowed a home run, a solo shot to Adam Dunn. No shame in Dunn popping one off you, but one never WANTS to give up home runs.
Michael Kirkman followed him, and that one was kind of sloppy too. After a lineout, there was a single, a strikeout, and a double. The run the Sox got this inning was due to a wild pitch by Kirkman. Wild pitches led to a lot of runs in this game, actually.
Robbie Ross pitched the final inning, and while he didn’t allow any runs, he did follow the sloppy a bit by hitting Adam Dunn.
In all, our pitching allowed 10 hits and three walks in nine innings. Six earned runs, so there was’t a lot of really stellar pitching except for those couple of innings that Darvish put up zeroes. The staff did strike out 13 White Sox batters, which is good. Nine of them came from Darvish, who feels like he already has 200 strikeouts just in April. :)
Offensively, the Rangers did quite nice for themselves. We had twelve hits, scattered nicely amongst the Ranger batters. Of the starting nine, only Soto & Gentry took ofers. Moreland led the way, going 3-3. Jeff Baker, Ian Kinsler, & Elvis Andrus each had two hits.
The Rangers had three home runs, and one of them only missed being a grand slam due to some really sloppy pitching by Nate Jones. In the sixth, the Rangers had loaded the bases, and then had two wild pitches, allowing two of the runners to score. That robbed Adrian Beltre of a grand slam, as well as the home run contest person losing out on $25,000 – instead, I think she got $300. Bet they’re no fans of Nate Jones, eh?
Overall, the Rangers let this game get too close, IMO. We won 10-6, and that was good, but we were up 10-4 at one point. Once it got to 6, I felt weird. Heck, if one more guy had gotten on base in the 9th, it would have become a technical save situation, and Joe Nathan *WAS* up. Stupid in a game where we scored 10 that we had to have the closer up.
Oh well, it’s a win. We’re still in first place. We ended the month with a 17-9 record, and the second best record in the AL. Yu Darvish won six games in April, the first Rangers starter to do that since the late 90’s great Rangers teams. So that’s all good.