ARLINGTON, TX - MAY 18: (ALTERNATE CROP) Mitch Moreland #18 of the Texas Rangers is congratulated by teammates Alex Rios #51 (C) and Robinson Chirinos #61 (R) after hitting a home run during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays at Globe Life Park on May 18, 2014 in Arlington, Texas. Texas won 6-2. (Photo by Brandon Wade/Getty Images)
So – simple, right? – the Rangers were losing, decided to meet and then won. That the way baseball go?
At least it worked on Sunday as Texas, in the wake of a pre-game, players-only meeting – got a stress-relieving two-run homer from Mitch Moreland and a charitable four errors from the Blue Jays for a much-needed 6-2 victory in Arlington. The Rangers not only snapped a season-high, four-game losing streak, they also avoided a sweep by Toronto and won for the first time since May 5 when its opponent scored a run. That’s the right, the Rangers went almost two weeks without winning a game via anything other than a shutout.
Meetings don’t magically heal injuries, and we all know how this team has been ravaged this season. But sometimes meetings can soothe feelings, or inject a jolt of energy.
“We wanted to see how everybody was,” shortstop Elvis Andrus told reporters after the game. “We wanted to make sure everybody stays focused on the game because we still have four months ahead of us. It was more a ‘let’s stick together’ because it’s the only way we can get out of this funk.”
Meetings, smoke and mirrors or motivational speeches be damned, if you don’t score runs you don’t win and the Rangers entered Sunday with just six runs in their past four games. With Prince Fielder out with a sore neck, Moreland had the key hit. Talk and camaraderie and feel-good mojo can only go so far. Timely hits trump meetings.
The Rangers won Sunday because they played good baseball and scored more than two runs. Meetings don’t fix offenses. But at this point I guess they don’t hurt either.
Losers meet. Then win.
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.