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Monday Newsletter time: Rangers come home after messy loss spoils bid for .500

(AP photo/Jed Jacobsohn)

 

Four-game sweeps don’t happen very often because it’s hard to beat one team, even a bad team, in four straight games.

Make no mistake that the Oakland A’s are bad. The Texas Rangers, though, were worse in a 6-5 walk-off loss Sunday at Oakland Coliseum.

The Rangers committed five errors — five! — including a bad throw home by Marcus Semien that allowed the A’s to score the go-ahead run in the eighth. Dane Dunning wasn’t particularly sharp, failing to make it out of the fifth, and the Rangers couldn’t hold a 4-0 lead.

Semien tied the game at 5 in the ninth, scoring on a wild pitch, but Jed Lowrie singled in the game-ending run off Brett Martin in the bottom half.

“Just a lot of little things,” manager Chris Woodward said. “I expected more today.”

The loss snapped a four-game winning steak and kept the Rangers from climbing to .500.

Well, they played like a sub-.500 team.

Semien, the reigning American League Gold Glove winner at second base, committed two throwing errors. Andy Ibanez had an error at third base and could have been charged with a second.

Only the putrid A’s offense kept the Rangers from falling behind sooner than the eighth. Oakland was 1 for 15 at one point with runners in scoring position and still finished only 3 for 20. A good offense, though, would have converted far more times.

The Rangers walked six batters and hit one. The offense went cold after the fourth, and a missed chance in the seventh came back to bite them.

Simply put: They played a bad game and lost to a bad team.

Semien warming

The grand slam Semien hit Saturday was a breakthrough moment as it served as his first home run with the Rangers since signing a seven-year, $175 million contract Dec. 1.

Woodward said he saw it coming based on watching Semien over the past couple weeks. The hits have started falling the past 11 games.

Semien has a hit in nine of them and is batting .311 in the stretch to lift his average to .196. That doesn’t sound like much, but that’s the highest it’s been all season.

Oof.

At least it’s trending the right way, which coincides with the Rangers trending the right way. Their six-week stretch of playing well started with him struggling, and his awakening has the potential to spark the top of the lineup.

Corey Seager and Adolis Garcia need to heat up, as they did Saturday, and it would help if Mitch Garver’s knee would cooperate. Kole Calhoun is going well, and Nate Lowe has perked up a bit, too.

Seager homered Sunday for the second straight game.

A trip to Oakland did the Rangers a lot good.

A good cause

Everyone going to the Rangers’ game Monday against Tampa Bay needs to bring their wallets.

The net proceeds from the Texas 2 Split Raffle will be donated to the Robb Elementary School Memorial Fund in Uvalde, and the Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation will match whatever figure is raised,.

Let’s make it a big one.

The money will be used to help support the families of the victims of the mass shooting there last week.

A moment of silence will be observed before the game.

ICYMI …

Twelve stories were posted last week at Rangers Today, 10 by me and two by T.R. Sullivan. Six of them were free, though five of the freebies were the daily newsletter. That means there was some great content that only paid subscribers could access. If you’re thinking of going paid, especially if you follow the Rangers’ farm system, do it. Only $5.99 a month, $35 for six months or $60 a year. Take a look below these links, in case you missed it.

The Sunday Read: Jack Leiter update

Friday on the Farm: Remember him? Ryan Garcia update

Rangers farm report: Heating up at Double A Frisco

T.R.’s Memoirs: Top 50 decisions in Rangers history, Part I and Part II

Doggy video!

It doesn’t take much to entertain them sometimes. Enjoy. See you Tuesday.

 

Jeff Wilson, jeff@rangerstoday.com

Jeff Wilson

Sports reporter for two decades. Sports fan for life. Covers the Texas Rangers. Graduate of TCU. Colorado native. Author of Purple Passion: TCU Football Legends (https://t.co/2fmXLyympx). Follow me on Twitter at @JeffWilsonTXR

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