This might be the game the Rangers needed to get their swagger back.
Down 6-0 in the third, it looked like another loss and another series loss was coming. This was a team whose offense had sputtered. And when Jon Gray’s return from missing a few starts sputtered as well, you couldn’t blame everyone in Rangers nation for looking past this one and saying, maybe next game.
But a funny thing happened. That Rangers offense that was so potent earlier on, returned. After stranding a runner at second with one out in the first, and at second and third with two outs in the second, the Rangers were 0-for-their-last-23 with runners in scoring positions. And they were down six runs. And their bullpen was now in the game. And their first two batters of the bottom of the third got out.
Then the Blue Jays made an error. And Adolis Garcia had the patience to coax a walk. Once again, the Rangers had a runner in scoring position. Only, this time, Josh Jung came through with a single. And the Blue Jays helped with another error. And the Rangers scored two runs. It as 6-2.
A hit with runners in scoring position is a glorious thing.
Then came the fourth inning. The Rangers once again had two on with two outs. Once again had a runner in scoring position. And once again got that hit that had eluded them the past two weeks. Corey Seager doubled in both runs. After Lowe walked, Adolis Garcia singled in Seager. Suddenly, it was 6-5.
Heim led off the bottom of the fifth with a home run to tie it. Garver walked. Duran singled. And once again the Rangers had a runner in scoring position. Leody Taveras singled in Garver, moving Druan to third, and giving the Rangers a 7-6 lead. Marcus Semien’s sac fly scored Duran. It was 8-6. And, while officially not a hit with runners in scoring position, it was a productive out, which was also something the Rangers weren’t doing.
Toronto scored a run in the seventh to cut the Rangers lead to 8-7. But the suddenly re-arrived Rangers offense kept the foot on the gas pedal.
The Rangers instantly snuffed out any hopes the Blue Jays had of salvaging this thing. Duran singled, Taveras homered, Semien doubled, and Seager singled. Three more runs. Another double-digit Rangers offensive explosion.
And, more important, a Rangers 11-7 win. A series win. And a collective exhale from the Rangers offense.
Corey Seager got four hits. Ezequiel Duran got four hits. Leody Taveras got three hits.
The Rangers got six hits with runners in scoring position.
And for the first time in 2023, the Rangers overcame a six-run deficit.
That just might have been the most important game of the season for the Rangers.