What a difference a couple of months makes, as it's been nearly two months since the Texas Rangers went to Oakland's O.Co Coliseum and swept the first-place A's, sending what we thought was a major statement from a team that we thought was badly battered (little did we know...)
Starting Monday night, the Rangers head back to Oakland for the first time since, sitting eight games back of Oakland for the AL West lead and in fourth place in the division with a historically banged up squad and a laundry list of key players out for the season and on the disabled list.
So before we start what could be an ugly series, let's take a quick look back at that magical three days and how different things looked back then, when the Rangers moved into first place in the division — albeit for a short time.
Game 1: The Rangers won 4-3 behind RBIs from Prince Fielder (DL), Kevin Kouzmanoff (DL) and got a big hold by reliever Alexi Ogando (DL). They beat A's starter Dan Straily, who isn't in rotation anymore after being replaced by Drew Pomeranz, who starts Monday night against the Rangers.
Game 2: The Rangers won 5-4 as Ogando (DL) got the win in dramatic fashion. Former Athletic Josh Wilson (back in the minors) had a game-tying hit in the top of the ninth to score pinch-hitter Mitch Moreland (DL). Shortly after, Wilson scored the game-winner. The Rangers lost Kouzmanoff with back stiffness early in the game, and we all know how that's turned out.
Game 3: Martin Perez (Tommy John) fired his second straight shutout and extended his scoreless inning streak to 26 with a 3-0 win. After that game, Perez's season took a downturn and a month later, he was out for the season.
Funny how stuff works sometimes.