What happened to this team? Can we really be talking about the Rangers decline already?
After a scorching hot start to the season (finishing April off with a 17-6 record) the team had a not so good May (14-14). The teams starting pitching, which had every pitcher undefeated after at least three starts, now looks to be in trouble. Neftali Feliz and Derek Holland are on the disable list and Scott Feldman has gone winless in 4 starts as a replacement.
The team has starting June off in HORRIBLE fashion. The last day of May saw an embarrassing 21-8 loss to the Mariners (the MARINERS??!!) only to be followed up a series loss to division rival Los Angeles Angels. In that series it looked as if the team forgot how to play defense, committing several key errors that gave the Angels the series.
But they have really hit bottom against the hapless Oakland A’s this week. An A’s rookie Jarrod Parker held the Rangers hitless until the 8th inning and made them look foolish at that. A lone Mike Napoli homerun was all the Rangers could muster in the 12-1 loss.
After a 6-3 win the next night, Bartolo Calon (yeah he is still around) at age 39 threw a 2-0 shutout against what was suppose to be the majors best lineup.
And how do the Rangers and Yu Darvish bounce back from that? Getting waxed again by the below average team 7-1. That’s right, the Rangers lose 3 of 4 to the Oakland A’s on the road.
I know its a long season. And I know that there are always ups and downs. And I know that the team will be getting Roy Oswalt in the starting rotation. BUT COME ON!!
The one thing the team has been counting on is that Derek Holland and Matt Harrison will turn a corner and become the consistent pitchers that we know they can be. What they have gotten, is the same ole same ole. Holland being goofy even when pitching poorly, and Harrison saying he will continue to work.
The offense hasn’t done much better. After starting off incredibly, Hamilton’s average and power have slowed tremendously and no one else has picked up the slack. Usually teams go through hitting slumps for 2-3 weeks, not five. And the Rangers have had perfect opportunities to tee off of below average teams like Seattle and Oakland. But they are the ones getting hit.
The division that many fans took for granted is now VERY much in play with the Angels starting to play better. Even with the loss of Jared Weaver, their rotation is stronger and more consistent than ours.
Its a long season and things can come together. But this team needs a spark and needs it soon and bad or else we will be lucky to make the playoffs, much less win a division.
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