Long ball returns.

Adolis Garcia watches the Rangers 25-inning scoreless streak vanish over the centerfield wall.

Rangers fans learned something new last night. If a ball struck by a player wearing a Texas Rangers uniform goes over the outfield wall, that player can automatically run the bases and return home without fear of being tagged out.

It is called a home run. 

The Rangers Adolis Garcia tried one last night. They liked it so much, Evan Carter tried one right after that. 

And, just like that, their streak of twenty-five scoreless innings at home vanished. Before they left for their ten-game road trip, Texas was shutout at home by Oakland 1-0. Tuesday, they were shut out by Seattle 4-0. And, after leaving runners in scoring position in the first and second, it looked like this long string of futility was going to continue.

Until, finally, Adolis Garcia crushed a Bryce Miller pitch over the centerfield wall to tie the game 1-1. Two pitches later, Evan Carter launched one to right center to put the Rangers up 2-1. They tacked on two more in the sixth and another in the seventh to cruise to a 5-1 win behind some great pitching by Jon Gray, Jonathan Hernandez who was just recalled and picked up the win, David Robertson, and even Jose Leclerc who is much better in non-save situations.

It was a game the Rangers desperately needed to win for a number of reasons. They were in danger of falling under .500, which has never happened under Bruce Bochy’s tenure with the Rangers. And they were in danger of being shut out for the third time in a row a home, something that had never happened. 

The long ball cures a lot that ails an offense.