No energy this morning for a full report - six hours of baseball last night drained me a bit more than usual - but I share this staggering note from Matt Mosley of ESPN 103.3 FM and Fox Sports Southwest before sharing another round of in-game tweets from Tuesday night:
The Angels are .500 against the Mariners and A's this year (actually 16-15), while the Rangers are 19-7.
Right there is a 5.5-game swing in the division standings. If Texas and Los Angeles had the same record against the two bottom-feeders in the AL West . . . .
But they don't.
And after today, Texas has 12 of its next 15 games against Seattle and Oakland, leading up to the final three games of the regular season in Anaheim.
Oh, one more quick note. The Rangers' four full-season minor league affiliates kick the post-season off tonight, with Eric Hurley (AAA Round Rock), Robbie Ross (AA Frisco), Justin Grimm (High A Myrtle Beach), and Cody Buckel (Low A Hickory) drawing Game 1 starts.
As we discuss every year, win-loss records aren't the objective as far as player development is concerned, but you do want your prospects experiencing big games late in the year and learning how to finding that extra gear to win. Especially considering that this is an organization that regularly pushes its best minor league players aggressively, typically fielding the youngest rosters in their leagues, and that this system, once again, has seen a significant number of productive players graduated to the big leagues or traded away during the season, it's been another remarkable year on the Rangers' farm.
Congrats to Scott Servais and the Rangers' outstanding crew of minor league coaches and instructors, not to mention the scouting department responsible for evaluating baseball talent all over the world and helping the organization decide which players are worth giving a jersey to that says "Texas" on it.
A sample of last night's Twitter activity:
This is why I reject anyone's suggestion that Kins ought to be elsewhere in the lineup.
Ha...and then THAT (I'd posted the last tweet after he'd run the count 3-0 to start the game). #IKHR
That shot of Joe West reminded me of the one lasting memory I have of the Ally McBeal series. #waddle
It hasn't been a very good year for Murph but man, he's gotten in his first groove of the season at a pretty good time.
Money play by Moreland. I've had enough of all the ducksnort hits off @str8edgeracer.
Murph. Good grief. #wintertradepiece #butfirstthingsfirst
Or even if they do. [@RangersRadioBD you would have to imagine the Rangers have a plan B if they don't sign CJ.]
Murph had three extra-base hits in 29 June & July games. He has three thru five innings tonight. #realtalk
I'd like to see Uehara, Adams, and Feliz each get 2 or 3 outs tonight. #Cerberus
I do like getting Hamilton off the turf here. But still confounded at the pen non-usage. Nadel notes Leonys's Dad in attendance tonight.
I wish CJ had finished after eight innings and 108 pitches. #Lost #donttellmewhaticantdo #108
@str8edgeracer #didwork #firstproShutout (including minor leagues)
King Felix against Ervin, minutes away. #3.5or2.5
[lots of Angels-Mariners in-game tweets skipped . . . ]
Scioscia bats Trout for C Bobby Wilson in *5th*. Still don't understand why Trout doesn't play every day.
And Trout, who struck out, simply replaced by Mathis on defense. Not kept in defensively himself. Odd usage by Scioscia. Fine with me.
Phillies lead the league in Cool. Cliff and Utley may be 1 and 2 in baseball, no?
Raul Ibanez looks like Maya Rudolph. #realtalk
M's have now stranded 14 in eight innings, clinging to one-run lead. I'm getting cranky.
Both SEA runs were unearned. Poor Angels: *they're* defense let them down. #ISeeWhatIDidThere
When the heck am I gonna squeeze in my annual trip to Fall Instructs? #firstworldpennantracepains
3.5. See ya back at the #TwitterSportsBar at noon.
Derek Holland in four hours against David Price, who shockingly has an 0-5, 5.85 record in seven career starts against Texas (including the playoffs). Price has fanned 25 Jays and Orioles in his last 14 innings. Holland has allowed one run in his last 13.2 innings, facing the Angels and Red Sox offenses.
This is good.