A thing of beauty. 190 comments


Delino DeShields scores from first base on an infield grounder, setting off a chain reaction of offense.

 

Nobody ever said they had to be pretty. But that one last night was a thing of beauty. Ugly beauty.

The ugly: Another Matt Moore crash and burn job. He comes into the game with an ERA of 7.67 and leaves the game with it a few clicks south of 8.00. When Matt Moore is on the mound, the bullpen and the offense are required to work overtime.

Which led to the beautiful.

A Rangers four-run comeback rally that came with two outs, without a home run, and with some really good base running. Delino DeShields scored from first on an infield error. That rarely happens. And it wasn’t even close. Two doubles and a single followed and it was tied.

Then the Rangers defense reared its ugly head again. Nomar Mazara dropped a fly ball to allow the Tigers to retake a lead.

But some really ugly defense on the Tigers part in the bottom of the inning gave back the lead to the Rangers.

Then, Kiner-Falefa dropped a ball in the top of the eighth inning and it looked like another ugly crash and burn. Until he turned a beautiful double play to end the inning, preventing the tying run from scoring. He took a bad throw, somehow managed to stay on the base, pivoted as the runner was bearing down on him, and threw a perfect throw to first.

Then in the top of the ninth, Keona Kela came in, having allowed a run in his last two appearances, with a razor-thin lead that didn’t afford him that luxury. He gave up a hit, but closed it out.

And the Rangers celebrated a great comeback, twice.

It was beautiful.

*****
TODAY’S GAME:

Mike Fiers (2-2, 5.00) vs. Mike Minor (3-1, 4.36)
Game time: 7:05

How the Tigers hit against Minor.
How the Rangers hit against Fiers.

  • dearmidol

    The answer to yesterday’s question from WhoKnows, from today’s Dallas Morning News:

    The Rangers obtained right-hander Emmanuel Class from San Diego, completing the deal that sent catcher Brett Nicholas to the Padres. Close, 20, pitched at the rookie and short-season A levels last season and had a 6.00 ERA with 22 walks and 46 strikeouts in 39 innings.

    • Rowdy Yates

      Hell, bring Clase up now. His 6.00 ERA would fit in perfectly.

  • Gregor_S

    Sometimes bad team baseball can be better than good team baseball.

  • Tony Howell

    Checked on minors and this is what I see. Triple A Round Rock 11-21 last place. Double A Frisco 6-25 last place. Adv A Down East 15-16 3rd place. A Hickory 9-19 last place. Top minor league pitchers, Crouse has not played yet, Ragans HNP- Tommy John, Mendez 0-3 era 6.66, Cody HNP, Palumbo HNP, Hernandez 3-2 era 2.45 (pitching in A ball), Martin 0-4 era 9.53. This is our top seven pitching prospects. It looks just like the big league club. The future is not looking very bright.

    • dearmidol

      Yikes.

  • elkaba
    • dearmidol

      Great article. I remember posting a radical idea of guys going three innings a game a couple of years ago, It was half joke, half serious.

      • elkaba

        Yeah, but we’re still seeing everyone on the fence on this, as it were. If we’re heading to “all bullpen” pitching, then it’s time somebody went all the way. If we’re seeing GM’s balk at the price for SP’s who, except for a shrinking number of true Aces, rarely give more than 5 innings then why not focus more dollars on long relievers now? Going cheap on both ends, like our own fearless leader is attempting, throwing chump change at both SP’s and RP’s, that can’t be the answer. If we’re heading to an all bullpen rotation then I say go all the way. Pay good money for long men and be done with it.

        • azrangerfan

          The 1 pitcher for 1 inning that the Rangers are using has gotten real old real fast. I say go to the 3 inning pitcher now with a true closer. The Rangers don’t have a stable full of 6 or 7 inning pitchers anyway.

          • elkaba

            Exactly! If you look at the leagues objectively, there just aren’t enough decent SP’s to go around, at least not enough for 30 teams to have 5 decent SP’s. So I can see both why the price for SP’s has gone so high and why teams are faced with looking for other options. And if you combine the economic reality of it with the TJ surgery epidemic it just makes even more sense.

            But the problem we’re seeing, the big issue I have with JD and Banister, is we’re still trying to use Old School managerial techniques on a New School pitching stable, and like you said, it’s gotten real old real fast. The hybrid system isn’t working. We don’t have decent SP’s and we don’t have enough relievers to do what Banister does.

            You have to drill down to the numbers and start from scratch. With a 25 man roster you’re going to have to get more creative. You need more pitchers and probably a new kind of Super Duper utility player, one who can play both in the field and on the mound in a pinch. Even your backup catcher(s) will need to be double duty prepared.

            So to start, you’d get rid of your borderline SP’s or convert them to long men. (You wouldn’t overpay for broken down starters!) Keep only your very best SP(s). Then put your money toward the best long relievers you can buy, a solid Closer and maybe a backup Closer or L-R specialist. Instead of the traditional utility player, you’d have to carry RP’s who could step in in the infield or outfield when needed.

        • JacobMcCandles

          Not going to happen…closest you will get is what we are getting close to now….SP throws hard for 5-6 innings..then the cascade of relievers……and let me point out not because its Houston but they have the lowest ERA in the majors at this time since 1950…..Everyone of its starters has thrown 100+ pitches. Houston scored 16 runs last night and Kuechel still threw 8 innings, while he easily could’ve been pulled.

          The final straw is and will always be the more pitchers you use the more chance you will find someone who is off….and we have seen plenty of evidence of that right here at home….IMO of course

    • azrangerfan

      Give me 3 innings and you are done. Let’s give it go.

      • elkaba

        How about once through the rotation instead of set number of innings?

        • dearmidol

          So, with Matt Moore, two thirds of an inning then.

          • elkaba

            LOL, I don’t have a Matt Moore in my plans regardless. 🙂

  • Rowdy Yates

    It was a thing of beauty for one night. Wish I’d been there to see it in person. Still, as the old saying goes: you can put a wig, lipstick and pearls on a pig and it’s still a pig.

  • Tony Howell

    May 1 1920 Braves vs Robins (Dodgers) 26 innings most innings ever played in a mlb game. Two pitchers Leon Cadore Brooklyn against Joe Oeschger Boston both men pitched a complete game all 26 innings, game ended 1-1 called because of darkness. Ask years later how many pitches did you throw they guessed some were between 250- 300 each. And no Tommy John surgery. Tough old men

    • elkaba

      How much velocity would they have pitched with back then? Maybe 50-60 mph?

      • dearmidol

        It had to be in the 80s I am sure.

        • elkaba

          OK. But wouldn’t that still be worlds away from throwing 90-100 mph in terms of wear and tear on muscles and joints?

          • dearmidol

            Right, see my comment directly above.

          • elkaba

            Yeah, I think the age when the wear and tear starts is really the key.

        • dearmidol

          There is a great documentary on Netflix called “Fastball.” It’s about the history of the fastball in baseball. Those guys threw in the 80s and low 90s. But the difference was two things. One, they didn’t play in club ball and play year round and pitch in 100 games a year every year through junior high and high school. Two, and this may be an overstatement, but they didn’t throw faster than the anatomy allows. The human arm wasn’t built for throwing that hard.

          • Gregor_S

            Keep meaning to watch that documentary and never get around to it. Did it say anything about Walter Johnson? He struck out over 300 once or twice, supposedly using only a fastball, and had a long career (over 400 wins). He probably didn’t pitch much as a kid but most likely worked on a farm and built up his arm that way.

            And then there’s Nolan Ryan, whose arm apparently WAS built for throwing that hard. I wonder if his longevity was due partly to the fact that from the time he first came up with the Mets until the time he was traded to the Angels he mostly sat on the bench. The Mets for some reason didn’t seem to think that highly of him. So in his first big year, when he joined the Angels rotation and won a bunch of games with a ton of Ks, he was 25. Warren Spahn was another who didn’t pitch much until he was 25 (because he served in WW2 in his case) and had a long career. Two cases aren’t much of a sample size but I do think too much pitching at a young age is a big factor.

          • dearmidol

            I don’t remember what they said about Walter Johnson, but they did say quite a bit about Nolan Ryan.

            It’s great. There is a bit with Mike Schmidt that talks about hitting a fastball that’s pretty amazing.

          • Gregor_S

            Don’t have Netflix but I’m sure I can find it some other way.

          • dearmidol

            It’s on DVD on amazon as well.

          • Gregor_S

            Thanks

          • dearmidol

            I just rewatched it. I had forgotten how much they talked about Walter Johnson.

          • elkaba

            Sounds about right to me.

          • JacobMcCandles

            Thanks for the Netflix tip will watch this week. Yall have covered this argument from every angle. My only two cents is that we cannot expect these pitchers to show up in the bigs and just turn on the gas. These “investments” are being milked all along in the minors.

            For those who pitch in college, sometimes you get a college coach that is fighting for his job or is highly competative and will push them hard.

  • JacobMcCandles

    I think Gregor said last night that this was the most exciting game of the year and I agree…..that mad dash by DD Firestarter Deshields was more exciting than any HR. Even though many avgs are dropping, the BB being played has been raised a tick recently….hard not to think what an Elvis,healthy Beltre,and 2016 Odor could do to this team….top of the lineup sure would look good DD,EA.Maz.AB,Gallo,Alfalfa (LF),Choo,RC,Odor,

    • dearmidol

      It was, and you are so right about the mad dash home. Much more exciting than a home run. I kept watching that play, I don’t think the second baseman had any idea DeShields would make that mad dash. He kind of halfassed it getting to the ball.

  • JacobMcCandles

    Am I missing something, I thought Mendez got called up? But he hasn’t been used??

    • dearmidol

      Not yet.

  • dearmidol

    Going to the game tonight. I hope we get another good one. Since they are playing the Tigers, there is a chance to win the series.

    • GoRangers23

      Have a good time! I hope we win for you!

    • FlappingGums

      Have a great game! Hopefully we’ll win tonight! 😀

  • possumrld

    So is Minor our new “ace”‘ now? He has a higher ERA than Colon or Hamels. And Hamels has finally gotten his ERA just under 4.00., down to 3.96 But Minor’s 4 and 1 win total is by far the best of all our other starters.
    But I have noticed a pattern when it comes to all of the Rangers starting pitchers, and that is that they all tend to go fairly well until about the 4 through the 6th inning, and then they start getting thrashed. And I think Moore is the worst about that all of the rest.
    Perez doesn’t necessarily really fit that pattern though. He can have a big bad inning anytime, and often it is earlier on in the game.
    It will be interesting to see how it all pans out. But I have a sneaking feeling Hamels is going to do opposite of last seaosn, and get better as the seaosn wears on and have a better second half, and claim his old “Ace” title back.
    Don’t ask me why I think that, I just do. Maybe it is because he has pitched pretty well his last couple of starts.

  • Rowdy Yates

    Just heard Smoltz on MLB Network say that the last two years not one MLB team got 1000 innings from the starters. So given 162 games that means no team averaged 6 innings from their starters.

    • JacobMcCandles

      Must be some codicil to that like the teams original starting 5 or something, find it hard to believe…but certainly not inclined to research it and I’m sure there is some stat geek feeding him

  • GoRangers23

    Beltre is playing tonight?????

    • grumpyderfsmagic8ball

      He’s in the preview lineup. So yes.

      • FlappingGums

        WoW!! 😀

      • GoRangers23

        I knew that. Ha! I was so shocked at the time, I typed a question mark. What I should have said was BELTRE’S IN THE LINEUP!!!!!!!!!! 😄

    • FlappingGums

      I hope he’s not pushing to come back too soon . I think the warmer weather will help him! ☺

  • JacobMcCandles

    Minor and Beltre….how can we lose😎

    • WhoKnowscs

      By Minor starting out giving up 2 homers and 3 runs in the first inning before we even get to the plate.

      • WhoKnowscs

        But they have a pen like ours . . . so we’ll see.

  • JacobMcCandles

    Anyone freakin tired of exit velocity, or launch angle….useless info for fans

    • grumpyderfsmagic8ball

      Yes

  • TD30
    • FlappingGums

      Thanks TD!😀

  • JacobMcCandles

    Reds get Harvey

    • WhoKnowscs

      Good, take away the temptation.

  • JacobMcCandles

    Tigers at 14-20….only 3 games out

  • JacobMcCandles

    Our Ace…..3-0

  • Rowdy Yates

    What could be more ‘Rangers like’ than to have your #1 or 2 starter throw 8 pitches at home and be behind 3-0!

  • JacobMcCandles

    Fires gives up the HR….LOOK OUT

  • JacobMcCandles

    Hope the fans give AB a standing O

    • JacobMcCandles

      Next inning of course

  • WhoKnowscs

    hmmmm . . .

  • FlappingGums

    Oh No!! 😭

  • WhoKnowscs

    Perez’ defense as catcher won’t matter if he can’t call pitches well enough to no give up a meatball for every RBI hit.

    • Rowdy Yates

      I don’t think this can be pinned on Perez.

      • WhoKnowscs

        I know. Just got a little frustrated that all they could talk about was Perez’ defense when he hasn’t really had any offense.

  • WhoKnowscs

    Well . . . we are playing ourselves so I guess this is to be expected.

  • Rowdy Yates

    … and the beat goes on, 24 pitches 6 hits and 5 runs. “Rangers Baseball 2018” … and Beltre hasn’t even batted yet!

    • JacobMcCandles

      Sonny and Cher

      • elkaba

        No. Banny and the Jot.

        • JacobMcCandles

          HAHAHA

  • WhoKnowscs

    Beltre will lead it off . . . but he can’t score 5 runs in one swing.

    • FlappingGums

      Hide and watch! ;-)!

  • dearmidol

    I have almost the entire section to myself. That’s one benefit of the Rangers sucking.

    • WhoKnowscs

      You should start talking to yourself to make it look like you are going nuts talking the people not there.

    • JacobMcCandles

      Sit in a diff chair every inning. LO

  • elkaba

    5-0 already? That didn’t take long.

  • JacobMcCandles

    First Rounder that mentions this is the first game Minor has pitched with 4 days rest goes on double secret probation😎

    • elkaba

      But, but, but…

      • FlappingGums

        But what elk???? 😁

        • elkaba

          I can’t say. I’ll get double secret probation if I do! 😉

          • JacobMcCandles

            51

          • grumpyderfsmagic8ball

            But DSP has 🍿

      • JacobMcCandles

        Doodle

        • FlappingGums

          Lol!!

    • Rowdy Yates

      Braymond and Tag discussed it at length just before the game started.

      • JacobMcCandles

        Figures

    • WhoKnowscs

      Probably has more to do with the fact that he use to play for KC in Detroit’s division.

  • JacobMcCandles

    Dang….please don’t make me watch NBA or Skanks/Bosox

    • FlappingGums

      The Yankees–Bosox game ought to be a good game. I’m watching this one though.

      • JacobMcCandles

        Severing on the mound STUD

        • FlappingGums

          He is! He’s good!

  • FlappingGums

    TAG really likes the nickname ‘Condor’. 😄

  • Rowdy Yates

    Tag … Braymond, I don’t think this ‘Condor’ thing is working. Guzman doesn’t really look like one, thank God. And who wants to be named for a bird that eats rotting, dead animals. He needs another ‘nickname’.

    • elkaba

      Goozy is my pick.

      • dearmidol

        Or just Gooey.

        • elkaba

          Ooey Gooey.

          • Rowdy Yates

            Now you’ve gone too far! He plays BASEBALL not soccer.

          • elkaba

            Lola

      • FlappingGums

        That’s a good one!

    • FlappingGums

      Goose-man is my input.

      • elkaba

        Oooo I like that one.

      • JacobMcCandles

        Best one Flap

      • grumpyderfsmagic8ball

        I think he looks like Groot…groot-man

  • elkaba

    This game is so exciting they’re discussing jury duty.

    • WhoKnowscs

      Dave sounded like he wanted to go back to the Astros. Let’s oblige.

      • Rowdy Yates

        Too close. I want him announcing for the Nippon Hams in Japan.

        • JacobMcCandles

          You are on a roll

          • Rowdy Yates

            Ham Rolls is their minor league affiliate.

    • Rowdy Yates

      Anything to deflect from the crime being committed on the field.

      • JacobMcCandles

        Nice

  • elkaba

    Raymond sounds like he’d be better off calling games for little kids, like he’s calling the game for people who have never seen it before. Therefore I second Rowdy’s suggestion of shipping him to Japan someplace.

  • WhoKnowscs

    Change the score board Joey.

  • WhoKnowscs

    darn . . . it was foul.

  • Rowdy Yates

    Amazing no one caught that. Now make ’em pay!

  • WhoKnowscs

    Where’d Beltre go, why is Nunez at 3rd? =P

  • dearmidol

    Beltre is making a lot of throwing errors.

    • FlappingGums

      I would guess he’s questioning himself as to what’s going on.

    • WhoKnowscs

      That’s okay . . . they haven’t been as bad as the 3 Minor has thrown.

  • TD30

    Go Profar!

  • FlappingGums

    WooHoo PROFAR!!!

  • WhoKnowscs

    The obligatory “Not shutout homer”.

  • WhoKnowscs

    Rangers hitters may need this as well:
    https://twitter.com/WhoKnowscs/status/992216719274934272

  • dearmidol

    No hitter by James Paxton.

    • WhoKnowscs

      The Eagle did it(or was it another type of bird?)

  • WhoKnowscs

    3 no hitters this year in 3 different countries.

  • WhoKnowscs

    Stumpf is back.

  • WhoKnowscs

    Gardy and Banny, 2 peas in a pod. Going to a new pitcher when your starter’s only given up 1 solo home run is idiotic. But I guess we’ll take it.

  • dearmidol

    Hit one out.

    • WhoKnowscs

      Up it is.

  • WhoKnowscs

    Banny and Gardy must be twins. You can’t have micro-managers this dense raised apart, can you?

  • WhoKnowscs

    Profar don’t swing here.

    • WhoKnowscs

      You didn’t listen . . . and you flew out.

  • WhoKnowscs

    Rangers made a Star Wars themed Commercial “Episode XIII – A Solo Shot” to celebrate Gallo’s solo homers.

    • WhoKnowscs

      Oh . . . it’s for a Gallo Bobblehead where he’s dressed like Han Solo.

      • WhoKnowscs

        I just thought cheering about solo homers sort of made fun of them being 70+ percent of the runs we score.

  • TD30

    Nice

  • dearmidol

    More seventh inning magic?

  • WhoKnowscs

    Have faith. Banny’s twin is in the Tiger’s dugout.

    • WhoKnowscs

      Well . . . Banny’s Twin may be in the other dugout but the teams are mirror teams so it wasn’t a guarantee simply that their was a chance.

  • Gregor_S

    Good thing for Minor and the Rangers that they haven’t yet adopted that “each pitcher goes 3 innings” system. He was shaky early then settled down. A lot of pitchers used to be known for that but these days all we hear about it is that many have problems the 3rd time through the lineup. What about the first time?

    • elkaba

      There’s an exception to every rule.

      • Gregor_S

        Can’t come up with their names but the line about a lot of pitchers used to be “you have to get to him early.”

        • elkaba

          Yeah, I think that applies to many pitchers. If you don’t hit them early, you’re screwed. But statistically the more times through the line up the worse the ERA.

          • Gregor_S

            My problem is with applying it across the board instead of taking into account the individual pitcher, the opposing hitters, etc. Or that the reliever you have available is likely to be worse even though it’s his first time through the lineup.

            For that matter, I think the analytics guys apply stats in general too rigidly. I think they’d do better if fewer of them were math and business majors and more were English majors. Life is nuanced.

          • elkaba

            True, but I think the problem is there’s not enough pitchers to go around these days, so most teams get only one or two decent starters and use fillers for the rest. I guess it’s not a one size fits all kind of thing. But nuance would be a welcome change. I agree with that. It’s kind of like what Wash used to say- we need to do what the game is asking, not the mathematicians.

          • Gregor_S

            I definitely prefer Wash’s gut to dogmatic use of analytics.

          • elkaba

            If they’re not careful analytics will kill the sport. There’s barely any spontaneity or serendipity left in it, as it is. Every draftee is being reduced to little more than a mathematical model. Not much left to chance anymore.

          • Gregor_S

            Sometimes the analytics dictates boring strategies. I’ve mentioned in the past that there used to be a player named Eddie Yost who could foul off pitches almost at will. He could have 10-pitch at bats almost every time. So with pitch counts, analytics might say scouts should try to assemble a team full of Eddie Yosts. Then we’d watch batter after batter foul off pitch after pitch. That would get the starter to 100 pitches and out of the game by the third inning, but it wouldn’t be very entertaining.

          • JacobMcCandles

            Analytics are very important for info gathering….just cant live by them

          • elkaba

            I don’t know. I guess, but I’d really like to see how many in Cooperstown would never have gotten the chance to even play if analytics had been around in their day.

          • JacobMcCandles

            Haha…….diff times and players

          • elkaba

            Really? And how many potentially great players will never make it today, because they never got the chance? They’re not all Trouts. Some great players are deceptively slow to get going. Some who look like sure winners from the start will never be. If all that matters is the stats and analytics, then why aren’t all prospects panning out as expected?

          • JacobMcCandles

            Think you are arguing a diff subject now

          • elkaba

            Not really. If analytics gets any deeper in the game, a player like Altuve would never even get a look.

          • JacobMcCandles

            Don’t see that happening and don’t think you can offer up an example

          • elkaba

            Maybe not yet, but it’s coming. If they will pull a pitcher at 100 pitches even if he’s still got plenty in the tank, then it might not be too long before they won’t take a flier on a guy who’s not a match for what they think is the ideal physical specimen.

          • JacobMcCandles

            AMENNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN

  • dearmidol

    Eighth inning magic?

    • GoRangers23

      Sure, why not. 😄

    • WhoKnowscs

      Banny’s Twin magic.

  • FlappingGums

    Way to run DD!!!!!!!!!

    • dearmidol

      He is fast.

      • Gregor_S

        I’d say watching DD score from 1st is worth the price of admission but you can better judge that.

  • GoRangers23

    I wish I had been able to somehow record Eric Nadel’s limerick that he just said, because it was pretty cute. Unfortunately I can’t remember any of it. It was about Mike Minor and tonight’s pitching. 😄

  • WhoKnowscs

    Raymond saying the Tiger pitcher has electric arm. Doesn’t mean the same as when Banny says it.

  • GoRangers23

    Go Beltre!! We’re glad you’re back!

    • Gregor_S

      He was having trouble hitting with runners on earlier but his bad hamstring seems to have cured him of that.

      • GoRangers23

        Good! We need him working on all cylinders.

  • Gregor_S

    It’s nice having DD and Beltre in the lineup at the same time, which hasn’t happened much this year. DD went down in the second game and was out for 3 weeks, then Beltre was hurt right around the time he came back.

  • WhoKnowscs

    Yankees win . . . meh, now tied with the Red Sox =/

    • FlappingGums

      YaY!!😀

    • JacobMcCandles

      Severino 6-1

  • FlappingGums

    Is love to see a walk-off win for us tonight!!!

    • FlappingGums

      I would

  • WhoKnowscs

    Well, the Rangers have been spacing out their “firsts”. First Walk off might be one of the few things left.

    • WhoKnowscs

      A long with shutting out another team and getting shut out by another team, but I can live without the last one.

  • JacobMcCandles

    Paxton throws a nono……Minor bounced back nicely……DD avg over .300 and OBA at .360 And the wizard AB with 3 hits!!

  • JacobMcCandles

    Time for elk to tell Brocail about the DP

    • WhoKnowscs

      I think she’d use the opportunity to tell him something else instead.

      • elkaba

        How’d you guess?

        • WhoKnowscs

          Must be Psychic.

  • JacobMcCandles

    Whatever happens..the boys are playing better

  • JacobMcCandles

    Couldve went home Pro…Gooozie defense alone makes this team

  • JacobMcCandles

    Terrible AB RG

  • JacobMcCandles

    Bad 9th….some silver linings but now is not the time………Toods

  • GoRangers23

    Poo…

    • Rowdy Yates

      Yep the game did stink.

      • GoRangers23

        I got to catch the eighth inning in the car on the way back from my nephews graduation in Granbury. It was pretty fun, but the rest did stink.

  • Rowdy Yates

    Rangers came into tonight leading MLB in Ks by 21. With 11 more tonight they probably stretched that lead.