Not enough offense.

Evan Carter does it all: He makes a sparking play on defense, he scores the Rangers only run.

This is a glimpse into the next few weeks of Rangers baseball.

They need to have a lead of three or more runs heading into the eighth and ninth innings to have a possibility of winning.

When they face good pitching, it’s much more difficult. They have seven huge games looming over the horizon against Seattle. The Mariners have good pitching.

Should the Rangers make the playoffs, there’s usually one thing all playoff teams have in common. Good pitching. The old adage—and adages are a thing because they turn out to be true more often than not—is that good pitching beats too hitting.

The other adage is no matter how poorly a team is hitting, their offense will come alive when the Rangers bullpen enters the game.

Bruce Bochy got bit again not having an eighth-inning guy because he doesn’t have a ninth-inning guy because he doesn’t have a seventh- or sixth- or fifth-inning guy. He just has to run someone out there and hope they give up fewer than three runs. Which works when the offense has scored enough. But which doesn’t work when the Rangers have scored only one run.

The American League West is on a holding pattern. Houston lost again. Seattle lost again. The Rangers bullpen lost again. Like death and taxes, that’s unavoidable.