For the fourth time this season, the Rangers have won at least three games in a row.
They won four in a row, sweeping the Royals, to pull within a game of .500 in late April. Ten in a row to go from seven under to three over in early May. Five in a row in early June to get to .500. And now three in a row to pull within one game of .500. A win today and they will be even once again.
The flip side of all of this is that their winning streaks always accompany long periods of losing.
After the four in a row, the Rangers went 4-10.
After the ten in a row, the Rangers went 2-11.
After the five in a row, the Rangers went 8-12.
Every time they play well, hope rises and playoff talk slowly emerges from the shadows. Then reality sets in.
It’s not that fans don’t want this team to make the playoffs. But the only chance they have is through a wild card, and is it worth forsaking all those prospects for one lousy game?
It’s not that fans don’t think this team can even make it to the playoffs. It’s that this team continues yanking the football away from Charlie Brown right as he is about to kick it. Fans are smart enough to quit lining up for the shot.
So while I am thrilled this team has won three in a row, and they go into this final game before the break with their Federally-mandated quota All-Star on the mound, with a chance to even things up going into the second half, skepticism overrides blind loyalty.
Last night was turn back the clock night. Which is really what this entire season has been. After every long winning streak, the Rangers turn back the clock to 2014.
Show me you can play this well for a month, then I will believe.
J.C. Ramirez (7-7, 4.73) vs. Yu Darvish (6-7, 3.56)
Game time: 2:05