Rangers Win Series Finale against Orioles

Rangers Orioles
(Photo by Sam Hodde/Getty Images)

Rangers 5, Orioles 2

ARLINGTON, Tex. (Apr 5) — The Texas Rangers were able to avoid the sweep against the Baltimore Orioles, as they won Wednesday’s matinee by a final score of 5–2 at Globe Life Field. Adolis Garcia and Nathaniel Lowe both had RBI doubles. Josh Jung contributed as well with a solo home run in the sixth inning. This victory marks the end of the Rangers’ first home stand of 2023. They posted a record of 4–2 in that stretch. After an off day coming up on Thursday, they’ll travel North to Wrigley Field for a three-game series against the Chicago Cubs. The first game of that series is on Friday at 1:20 pm Central. Right-hander Marcus Stroman (1–0, 0.00 ERA) will make the start for the Cubs, while Nathan Eovaldi (1–0, 5.40 ERA) will get the ball for the Rangers.

Back and Forth Affair

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Scoring opportunities came up at different times for both teams on Wednesday. The Rangers got things started in the bottom of the first inning. Rangers shortstop Corey Seager crossed the plate on an RBI double to right field by Adolis Garcia. On deck stood third baseman Josh Jung. He got up to the plate and managed to drive in Garcia with a single to make it 2–0 Rangers.

On the other side, the Orioles got on the board in the top of the fifth inning. Austin Hays reached base on a fielder’s choice. That was enough to drive in Ryan Mountcastle. They tied it up quickly with a single to left field by Adam Frazier that drove in Terrin Vavra. The Rangers reclaimed the lead in the bottom of the sixth inning. A two-run homer by Jung made it 4–2 Rangers. Nathaniel Lowe added another insurance run in the bottom of the seventh inning with a single to left. That single drove in left-fielder Ezequiel Duran.

deGrom’s Day

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Rangers righty Jacob deGrom made his second start of 2023 on Wednesday. He earned his first win as a Ranger (6 IP, 2 H, 2 R-1 ER, 2 BB, 11 SO, 92 pitches/58 strikes). His record now stands at 1–0, with an ERA of 5.59. His 11 strikeouts were the 2nd-most by a Rangers pitcher since the start of the 2020 season. This is second only to a 12-strikeout performance by his current teammate Jon Gray on 6/1/22 against the Tampa Bay Rays.

deGrom has posted 18 strikeouts through two starts this season (also 7 SO on Thursday against the Philadelphia Phillies). That number ties for 2nd-most ever by a pitcher in his first two outings as a Ranger: 23-Nolan Ryan in 1989, 18-deGrom in 2023/Jamie Moyer in 1989 (Stathead). In this outing, deGrom became only the third pitcher in club history to tally 11+ strikeouts while throwing 92 or fewer pitches. He joins Yu Darvish on 7/22/16 against the Kansas City Royals (11 SO/91 pitches) and Matt Perisho on 10/3/99 against the Los Angeles Angels (12 SO/78 pitches). deGrom is the first Rangers pitcher ever to pull the trick in Arlington.

Flirting with Perfection

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Jacob deGrom was perfect through four innings. He retired all 12 batters faced before surrendering a double to Mountcastle. He punched out eight batters over the first four frames. This includes a stretch of four straight plate appearances ending in a strikeout from the last out in the first to the last out in the second. According to Elias, deGrom’s nine career starts opened with four plus perfect innings are T2nd-most in baseball since the beginning of his debut season in 2014: 10-Max Scherzer, 9-deGrom/Clayton Kershaw, 8-Madison Bumgarner/Justin Verlander.

Postgame Comments

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Rangers manager Bruce Bochy had nothing but praise for his starter Jacob deGrom in his postgame media session. When asked what his thoughts were on his start, Bochy said “He was great. It’s good to get him a win too. They (Orioles) battled back to tie it, but Jacob was really on top of his game, and they did work him pretty hard in the fifth inning, but he bounced back and had a good sixth and all the pitching did a great job today”. Bochy also elaborated on how the bullpen has been doing. He said “It’s good to see those guys doing the job that they have been doing. We have a good bullpen down there, and they complement each other so well, and I have confidence in all of them.

After the game, Jacob deGrom was asked how he thought his outing went. He said, “I’m pleased with the performance, overall. I’m pretty hard on myself when it comes to that. The fifth inning took a bit of a toll on me. There’s room for improvement there. I’ve got to throw better out of the stretch, but that’s what I throw my bullpens out of because that’s where you make important pitches. There were a couple of times in the fifth where I made a couple of pitches that I shouldn’t have.

 

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