ST LOUIS, MO - OCTOBER 27: Ian Kinsler #5 and manager Ron Washington of the Texas Rangers celebrate after Kinsler scores on a Josh Hamilton #32 single in the first inning during Game Six of the MLB World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on October 27, 2011 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
So far in the month of August, the Texas Rangers have lost a game to the Oakland A's and another to the Milwaukee Brewers. And that's it.
Even with the stretch of bad baseball the Rangers played in July, this isn't all that surprising.
Other than the A's, the Rangers aren't playing a winning team this month, and it was up to them to take full advantage of their soft schedule, and so far, they have.
They've won 11 of 13 games so far this month and their remaining five series this month, starting with this weekend's against the Seattle Mariners, are against teams with a combined record of 249-350 — 101 games under .500.
Heading into games on Aug. 1, the A's were four games up in the division, and as we said back then, the schedules for August were vastly different for the two teams. The A's combined August opponents were nearly 50 games over .500, while the Rangers were close 200 games under .500. And now, halfway through the month, the Rangers are 1 1/2 games up, having gained 5 1/2 games in the standings in 15 days.
And it could be even more by month's end. In fact, don't be shocked if the Rangers reel off another long win streak. The Rangers have 14 games remaining in August, and it's entirely feasible that they win 11 or 12 of those. The A's, on the other hand, have 15 games remaining this month and just one series against a losing team, the Mariners.
It's entirely feasible that the A's could win as few as six or seven of those 14 games with two tough road series at Baltimore and Detroit and home sets against Cleveland and Tampa Bay. If that happens the Rangers could easily gain another five or six games on the A's through the end of the month.
Then, the schedule difficulty flips in September, and it's on. It's going to be a fun home stretch. Buckle up.