There’s been plenty of talk surrounding Josh Hamilton’s shoulder injury, and the way it happen. As you recall, Hamilton suffered the injury making a mad dash for home on a pop-up. An assortment of finger-pointing, apologies and arm slings soon followed. One thing remained certain, according to manager Ron Washington, the Rangers weren’t going to lose their aggressive style of play.
That very style was on display in Monday night’s 7-1 win over the Angels, a win that put the Rangers in sole possession of first place in the AL West. Let’s move to the bottom of the third inning, Ian Kinsler doubles off Angels starter Ervin Santana.
Elvis Andrus followed with a single, and Kinsler rounded third heading for home. The only problem was Angels outfielder Torii Hunter fired a laser towards home plate, nailing Kinsler by a mile. Knowing Hunter had an arm, third base coach Dave Anderson still gave Kinsler the green light, but no dice this time around.
That wasn’t going to be enough for the Rangers to stray away from the game plan. Up 2-0 in the bottom of the fifth, Kinsler tripled to deep left. Andrus came up and Washington decided to go with the suicide squeeze.
Andrus laid down the bunt as Kinsler ran home safely, and Santana’s throw to first went wild, allowing Andrus to advance to second. This opened the door for the Rangers, who scored four runs in the inning to put the game away.
CJ Wilson pitched a great game, and the bullpen came in and shut the Angels down to finish things off.
What this showed was there’s nothing, including an injury to the reigning A-L MVP, that will keep the Rangers from playing their game. Washington preaches aggression, and the Rangers put it in effect.
And it’s not ending anytime soon.