Carter and Jung.

Evan Carter rounds first as his home run leaves the ballpark.

The Rangers are back in first place, the only way they know how. Outscoring their bullpen.

They jumped to an 8-0 lead, then hung on to an 8-5 victory, leaving bases loaded, and leaving everyone in Rangers Nation with high blood pressure and missing clumps of hair.

The kids won this one.

Evan Carter continued his successful indoctrination into major league baseball with a three-run homer in the second to put the Rangers up 4-0. Those three runs would turn out to be the difference. He also walked, stole a base, and scored a run. The Rangers are 9-5 when Evan Carter plays.

Josh Jung got two hits, including a double, and scored a run. But it was his glove that saved the game. With the bases loaded in the top of the ninth and Aroldis Chapman on the verge of yet another Rangers blown save—this one would have been more devastating than all the others— Mariners Ty France hit a hot shot into the hole. Jung fielded it cleanly and fired a strike to Nathanial Lowe at first.

It’s doubtful Duran or Smith would have made that play. The Rangers are 3-1 since he’s been back.

Yesterday’s game was the blueprint for what the Rangers must do the next nine game. Score, score early, score often, have at least a four-run lead heading into the seventh.

Then, pray.