When your baseball team has as many Day One draft picks as runs plus hits allowed, that’s a pretty stinkin’ good night.
Time will tell whether June 12, 2017 will be about Bubba Thompson or Chris Seise or Hans Crouse, but in the meantime it was about Yu Darvish and Robinson Chirinos, whose distinction as the only Rangers starter not to reach base was insignificant in light of the game he called and caught — which was shockingly, as pointed out by Jared Sandler, not only one of just five Texas starts of one or zero hits allowed over at least 7.0 innings since 2010, but also the fourth of those turned in by Darvish himself . . . all of which have been against Houston . . . three of which have gone down in Minute Maid Park.
Texas has won four straight, all on the road and all against the team with the best record in the National League (at least when the Rangers arrived in town) and against the team with the best record in the American League.
The deficit in the Wild Card race is now 1.5 games.
With 99 to go.
As for the Draft, there are 38 rounds to go, with eight taking place today. We start with Round Three, which has been a good one for the Rangers recently (Josh Morgan, Michael Matuella, and Kole Enright the last three years) and in the past (Darren Oliver, Dean Palmer, Hank Blalock, Ryan Dempster, Taylor Teagarden, Robbie Erlin), and go through Round Ten.
At various points through the day, don’t be surprised to see a few college seniors selected, primary among the reasons for which is that you can generally sign those players for significantly less than slot (since they don’t have the leverage of returning to school) and use the bonus pool savings on Day One and Day Two players whose demands exceed slot (Crouse — whose story is really incredible — seems like a candidate to fit that category). Teams know which draftees will be more challenging to sign before they call their names, and their Day Two selections are commonly designed to address that.
And then it’s reinforcement starter Nick Martinez against reinforcement starter Brad Peacock, which may set the stage for a little more of that don’t-be-surprised-to-see.
If the Rangers manage for the second straight night to hold the Astros’ beast lineup to as many runs plus hits as there are draft rounds — eight on this day rather than three — you won’t get a complaint out of me.