Last night’s game was so important for many reasons. Beating the Astros, first and foremost, is how the Rangers start earning legitimacy in the West.
But what last night showed was the Rangers can generate offense without Corey Seager and Mitch Garver. It was a team that was badly in need of another bat going into the offseason, so much so that the owner said the Rangers priority was finding a bat.
What they found, instead, were a couple journeymen in Robbie Grossman and Travis Jankowski. (Grossman is currently hitting .143 with an OPS+ of 27. Jankowski is hitting .333 with an OPS+ of 176.) After two huge offensive games to start the season, the Rangers offense sputtered to score. Then they lost Mitch Garver, who was off to a strong start, then Corey Seager who is the offensive engine that propels the machine.
And then they lost to Kansas City, able to score one lone run.
That made this Houston series doubly important. It means the guys they are counting on for offense had better come through. Last night, they did.
Marcus Semien got two hits, including a double, and scored three runs.
Nathanial Lowe got two hits, also including a double, and drove in three.
Adolis Garcia hit the go-ahead home run in the third, a two-run shot.
Jonah Heim got two hits.
Even Travis Jankowski, who’s offensive contributions have to be considered a bonus, hit a triple.
And Martin Perez continued his rebirth as an all-star-level pitcher.
When key is, when guys go down, it’s up to the rest of the team to step up. Last night showed they can. Beating Houston 6-2 is always icing on the cake.