It was an all too familiar feeling exiting Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on Monday night; predictable though no less painful.
Because the Texas Rangers scored plenty of runs, nine to be exact; but after an ugly pseudo-start from Vicente Padilla and some rough middle relief from Scott Feldman, nine wasn’t enough.
Padilla lasted only 3 1/3 innings, giving up 11 hits and 7 earned runs.
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Feldman surrendered four hits over 2 2/3, and three runs, after striking out the first two hitters that he faced.
Josh Rupe, Eddie Guardado and Frank Francisco all did an above-average job in the late innings but, as they say, too little, too late.
The game, in retrospect, was over.
That said, Texas’ offense being the beast that it is, the contest was no runaway; the Rangers offense came back late, eventually coming within a run on an Andruw Jones home run,at 10-9. They veritably roughed up starter Koji Uehara, taking him for 7 runs on 7 hits over 5+ innings.
In the ninth, Ian Kinsler, who continued his impressive 2009 on Monday (.370), led off with a double.
Michael Young hit a line drive to deep right center that was gloved on a kind of amazing play by Ranger-killer Nick Markakis.
Kinsler didn’t tag up, and the gaffe cost the Rangers, as Kinsler could have ostensibly scored on the ensuing Josh Hamilton fly ball to center field. Of course, hindsight is 20/20, and everyone in the park thought that it was, at least, a double.
Game over, drive safe, Orioles win, 10-9.
At the end of the day, Kinsler’s mistake is of little consequence. Kinsler could have tagged up, just as Vicente Padilla could have had better command of his fastball.
The point (and I’m fairly certain most Rangers fans know this all too well) is that, as it stands now, an imbalance between offense and defense is putting a cumbersome strain on Texas’ hitters.
If Texas has any hopes of anything in the near future, the issue will have to be addressed.
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