Rangers Bounce Back against Mariners

Rangers Mariners
(Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images)

Rangers 5, Mariners 1

ARLINGTON, Tex. (Apr 24) — The Texas Rangers redeemed themselves from Tuesday’s 4–0 loss by beating the Seattle Mariners, 5–1, on Wednesday. Adolis Garcia and Evan Carter chipped in with back-to-back dingers to help the Rangers even this series at one game apiece. With this win, the Rangers reclaim their half-game lead over the Mariners atop the AL West with a record of 13–12. They’ll go for the series win on Thursday with first pitch scheduled for 1:35 pm Central at Globe Life Field. The Mariners will send right-hander Luis Castillo (1–4, 4.40 ERA) to the mound in the mid-week matinee, and the Rangers will counter with lefty Andrew Heaney (0–2, 6.35 ERA).

Garcia, Carter Go Back-to-Back

For the second night in a row, the Rangers found themselves behind in the top of the first. With right-hander Jon Gray on the mound, Josh Rojas led off the game with a triple that eluded center fielder Leody Taveras. Two batters later, Jorge Polanco drew a walk, and Mitch Haniger grounded into a force out that plated Rojas.

The Rangers got on the board in the bottom of the fourth off Mariners righty Bryce Miller. After Nathaniel Lowe lined out to left, Garcia hit his seventh homer of the year, a solo shot to center. Carter followed suit with a solo homer to right-center, his fourth of the season. It marked the first instance in 2024 the Rangers have hit back-to-back home runs.

They made it 4–1 in the bottom of the sixth. Carter struck out swinging to start the frame. Josh H. Smith followed with a hit-by-pitch from Mariners reliever Tayler Saucedo. It was at this point that manager Scott Servais brought in righty Tyson Miller from the bullpen. The first hitter he faced was Wyatt Langford, who singled to right, advancing Smith to third. On deck was Jonah Heim. He hit a single to right that plated Smith. A two-base fielding error by Haniger allowed Smith to advance Heim to third.

The Rangers got another insurance run in the bottom of the seventh. The Mariners brought in Austin Voth to relieve Miller. Corey Seager was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. Seager exited the game with a left shin contusion between innings. Lowe grounded into a fielders choice. He advanced to first on an obstruction error by Voth. Seager was out at second on the play.

What Went Right for the Rangers

A night after their bats were comatose, the Rangers came out swinging in this one. The back-to-back homers by Garcia and Carter were key as was the RBI single by Heim. The triple by Carter that scored Smith had the crowd of 31,896 on their feet as well.

What Went Wrong for the Rangers

Every Rangers fan in the ballpark flinched when Rojas led off the game with his triple. There was also the RBI groundout by Haniger. For a moment, it looked as if it was going to be one of those long nights in the run column for the Rangers.

Short Evening for Gray

Rangers starter Jon Gray did not factor into the decision after battling through 4 2/3 frames of one-run ball. After a 31-pitch first inning that saw the Mariners jump out to a 1-0 advantage, Gray tossed a sum of 61 pitches over 3 2/3 scoreless frames before giving way to the Rangers ‘pen. He fanned seven Mariners, stringing together seven-plus strikeouts in three straight starts for the first time since 6/28–7/13/22. Gray has struck out 32 of 110 batters faced across six games, five of which were starts, in 2024. That’s good for an 11.68 strikeouts per 9.0 figure.

He entered play ranked fifth in K/9 among AL pitchers. That would easily be the highest single season mark of Gray’s career (current: 9.91 in 2016). Reliever Jonathan Hernandez, fresh off the IL, got the win for the Rangers after pitching an inning and a third. His record now stands at 1–0, with an ERA of 0.00.

Miller Takes the Loss

Mariners starter Bryce Miller was saddled with the loss after exiting with one on, none out and his team trailing, 2-1, in the bottom of the fifth inning. His line was 4 IP, 4 H, 2 R-ER, 4 BB, 5 K, 2 HR, 83 pitches/49 strikes. He was scoreless through the first three frames before surrendering the back-to-back homers to García and Carter in the fourth. Wednesday marked the second time this season he permitted multiple home runs in the same game, as seven of his eight runs allowed in 2024 have come via the long ball. He has allowed five of them this year. The New Braunfels, Texas native is now 3–2 with a 2.22 ERA, 29 strikeouts, and 11 walks over five starts this season.

Postgame Comments

Rangers manager Bruce Bochy couldn’t help but praise the effort his team gave on Thursday. “You’re looking for a shot in the arm,” Bochy said. “Man, those are two big hits.” Bochy also commented on the status of Corey Seager’s injury. “It swelled up pretty good on the left shin,” Bochy said. “It swelled up really fast, too. We’ll see how it is tomorrow, and go from there.”

 

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