Yu Darvish #11 of the Texas Rangers looks on from the dugout. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
The Texas Rangers needed Yu Darvish to be his usual self when he faces the Houston Astros on Wednesday night in order to avoid falling into a last-place tie with the former lone laughing stock of the American League West.
He failed, and now the Rangers are in last place in the West and suffered the first sweep at the hands of the Astros since 2003, as the Rangers' season hit a low point that seems likely to only get lower over the final 71 games.
Darvish was sloppy in the field, threw a key wild pitch and just didn't have much control of his fastball as he relied on his breaking pitches that the Astros eventually began teeing off on as he took a rare loss against the Astros, allowing six earned runs on 10 hits in six innings.
In his last five starts, Darvish is sporting an unsightly 5.40 ERA and a 1-3 record while opponents have hit .274 against him that stretch. Amazingly, that includes his 8-inning, scoreless outing with 10 strikeouts in his last win against the Minnesota Twins, just to show you how bad things have been in those other four starts.