Spelling Relief Has Been Easy for Rangers - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Spelling Relief Has Been Easy for Rangers



    The easy thing to do at this hour would be to wax rhapsodic about Yu Darvish's performance in Toronto on Monday night.

    He threw strike after strike and gave up just a bases-empty home run on his way to another win. The Blue Jays looked just as lost when it came to hitting him as the Yankees did last week, which adds up to all the reason in the world to believe that there will be some hardware coming to his mantle when the year is out.

    It feels like there's going to be plenty of time to write that post, though. In fact, we'll probably wind up writing it more than once before we even get to the All-Star Game.

    So we'll take this moment to throw a little praise on the guy who followed Darvish to the mound in the eighth inning last night. Mike Adams retired the Blue Jays in order in the eighth, keeping the Rangers comfortably ahead and handing the ball to Joe Nathan for an easy save.

    That makes 11 innings of work for Adams this season and he still hasn't walked a batter while allowing just two runs. That's exactly what the Rangers were looking for when they dealt for Adams last season. Actually, it's probably even a little bit more but it certainly fits with what the Rangers relief corps has done this season. 

    Alexi Ogando hasn't walked a batter in 10.2 innings and Koji Uehara hasn't issued a free pass in seven innings. Those are pretty impressive results given how often these guys are pitching in the seventh and eighth innings of tight games. As a group, the bullpen has just four walks in 59 innings and a 13.25-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio.

    That's a lot less significant without Darvish and the other starters giving them leads to protect, obviously, but it's no less impressive. Something that was a weakness for much of last season has turned into a serious strength for a Rangers team that makes it hard to find the holes.