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G162: Season ends with 7-0 loss to Angels

After the first two games in this series, Rangers fans (at least the ones still watching) got excited, we beat the two best pitchers the Angels had. Could we three peat that? No, the local team went out there and reminded you that they’re the Texas Rangers and not the Anaheim Angels.
Joe Saunders pitched the way I thought Lackey & Santana would. Six innings, two hits, no runs, no walks, and nine strikeouts. The three innings tossed by the three Angels relievers were no different. No more runs, and just one hit in all that, too.
So yeah, we acted like the Texas Rangers in a shutout tossed against us. This put an exclamation point on the 2008 season, I would think.

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G161: Rangers beat Angels again, 8-4

OK, last night we beat John Lackey. Tonight we’re up against Ervin Santana, another pitcher who we never seem to be able to beat. Couldn’t pull that off twice, could we? Yes we could.
In another surprising turn of events, the Rangers beat the Angels 8-4 behind Scott “We’re reducing your workload” Feldman. Scott had a pretty good outing. Went six, gave up just one earned run (two overall) on five hits, two strikeouts, and no walks. He too is probably a real candidate to start the 2009 season in the rotation. He was pretty efficient with pitchers too, just throwing 82 over his six innings. Probably pulled him so others could get some work at the tail end of the season. I mean, they [b][i]ARE[/i][/b] trying to reduce his workload, you know.
The other side of the coin brought a second straight bad performance by an Angel starter not known for them. Ervin Santana went 5.2 innings, giving up 10 hits and one walk for eight runs. Not even close to being good there. We didn’t have a massive inning – in fact, our runs were scored over three frames. One in the third, three in the second, and four in the sixth.
The biggest point I suppose of the offense was the fact that we broke the major league doubles record. Hank Blalock did the deed, giving us the record, and then Chris Davis added one on later on. On top of that, the Rangers passed 900 runs scored for the season for just the fourth time in franchise history. If that wasn’t good enough, Josh Hamilton regained the lead in RBI’s in the American League, with two on Saturday night.

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G160: Rangers bomb Lackey & Angels, win 12-1

Whie Vicente Padilla has been a pretty decent pitcher this year, I don’t think anyone expected him to beat John Lackey. This is a guy that normally beats us (at least it feels that way). So I think it was rather a big surprise when the Rangers unloaded on Lackey, especially after the way we were mowed down the last time we faced him. Look at this:
Lackey on Sep 21st:
6IP, 0ER, 2H, 3BB, 12K, 110P
Lackey on Sep 28th:
2.2IP, 10ER, 12H, 2BB, 1K, 73P
That’s a major difference. I was quite surprised when we started unloading on John Lackey, you just don’t do that. It was so bad that in the third or fourth innings, every single Angel position player was changed. Only one player remained, and he changed position, but the eight other defenders in the field were different players. That really felt like a game played in March, not in late September.
It was bad (for Anaheim). Every Rangers starter got in on the hit parade. We had 19 in all. Six doubles, one triple, two home runs, and a pile of singles. The Rangers scored one in the first, seven in the second, two in the third, two in the fourth, and that was actually it. All the scoring was in the first four innings. However, the six doubles were notable as they tied an all time major league record. They now have 373 doubles for the season, which ties the 1930 Cardinals, and the 1997 and 2004 Red Sox for the all time lead. Given we still have two games left, one would think breaking the record would not be a problem. :)
The Rangers staff was quite good today, but that pretty much got overlooked by Lackey’s (lack of) performance. Combined, the Rangers pitchers went 9 innings, gave up just five hits, and one run on five walks, and ten strikeouts. It’s the kind of performance that wins you a lot of games, but it’s the kind of performance the Texas Rangers don’t normally get a lot of.
The win did clinch second place for the Rangers in 2008, something that the Rangers have never actually done, since the alignment went to a four team AL West.
Why o Why could we not do this more often than not during the season?