Ross Detwiler showed us something last night. He is probably a relief pitcher.
For the second straight start, he made it through the lineup once unscathed. Then, when hitters got comfortable with him, he was very scathed.
The Angels hit the ball hard but at people the second time around, generating only one run off Detwiler. Then, the third time around the lineup, they hit the ball hard and over people.
By the time it was over, Detwiler gave up five runs in 5.2 innings, and raised his ERA to 9.00. He’s 0-2 in two starts. It will be curious to see how many more he gets.
For the first time this season, the Rangers lost two in a row, and lost when they had a lead.
And in those two losses in a row, a total of twenty-three innings, the Rangers have scored in just two of those innings. Six of their nine starters are hitting under .200. They don’t have a home run at home.
Matt Shoemaker, the surprising young right-handed pitcher who came out of nowhere in the Angels system last year and hung up a 16-4 record, pitched the opposite of Detwiler. He started out rough the first time around the lineup, then righted the ship. He gave up four hits in the first inning that generated the Rangers three runs. Then, he settled down. The Rangers got just two more hits off him the rest of the game. He retired fifteen of the next sixteen hitters, in fact.
It seemed like the Rangers offense wanted to be at the Ballpark even less than the fans. The place was empty and quiet and sad. It was the smallest announced crowd (18,401 tickets sold, but there were about half that, fewer than 10,000 actually in attendance) since July of 2010.
It seems the fans are getting a good look at the Rangers as well the second time around. And they aren’t liking what they see.
Nick Martinez goes tonight. Let’s hope he pitches like he did last time, and he keeps the Rangers in the game so whichever inning they score in, it will be enough. The Angels counter with a rookie making his first major league start, Drew Rucinski.