Tuesday newsletter time: Little goes right as Rangers lose third straight
(AP photo/LM Otero)
ARLINGTON — Give a little credit to Rangers left-hander Andrew Heaney: He walked off the mound Monday night without a trainer escorting him.
Not one, but two, Tigers pitchers couldn’t say the same.
Heaney, though, allowed six runs in 5 2/3 innings, and the Rangers’ offense was gimpy with runners in scoring position during a 7-2 loss that pushed the Rangers’ losing streak to three games.
This one was fairly completely loss. The offense wasn’t very good, Heaney wasn’t very good and the outfield defense could have been better. That’s a losing trifecta right there.
“We’re going to come out of this,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “We’re too good of a club, too good off an offensive club. You’re going to have these times, and you have to keep pushing and move forward.”
The Rangers started fast as Marcus Semien led off with a home run off of Matthew Boyd, who would leave three batters later with left elbow discomfort. Will Vest replaced him, but Vest left in the second with right knee discomfort.
Two local pitchers, former Rangers prospect Mason Englert (Forney) and former TCU pitcher Jason Alexander (Southlake) kept the Rangers in check over 5 1/3 innings innings. Adolis Garcia connected off of Englert for the Rangers’ other run.
The Rangers went 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position, which is not good, and are 4-for-29 during their three-game slide. Bochy said the lack of production is part of the ebbs and flows of a baseball season, and he’s right.
But it also doesn’t help when the lineup strikes out 16 times.
“I do think we expanded at times,” Bochy said. “We have a could guys that need a day off.”
The silver lining is that the Rangers are getting base runners, and eventually they will begin cashing in as they were earlier in the season. Maybe that happens tonight.
Current trends would suggest otherwise.
The deficit the Rangers faced late in the game created opportunities for left-handers Brock Burke and Cody Bradford to break free from the mothballs they’ve been kept in most of the past two weeks.
Burke was the first choice to replace Heaney, and he allowed a run in 1 1/3 innings. The Rangers passed on using Burke in the eighth inning Sunday at Yankee Stadium, going with lefty John King.
Bochy said that the Rangers were looking for someone to keep the ball on the ground, and King has done that better this season. Burke pitched only once last week on the road trip and has pitched only five times this month.
“I told him it was a case of where we were looking at two different types of pitchers,” Bochy said. “He’s still a big part of this bullpen. He’s throwing fine.”
Bradford recorded two outs in the ninth inning in his first appearance in 13 days.
It might not be the throwaway inning it appeared to be. The Rangers need a starter for Thursday for the series finale, and Bradford is a candidate. His appearance could serve to knock the rust off and give him a taste of competition before stepping into a spot start.
Bochy said that he wasn’t staying away from Bradford, but a series of close games and his inexperience with getting ready quickly made it hard for the Rangers to use him.
The month of White
Owen White is having a nice little June.
The right-hander, ranked as the Rangers’ No. 2 prospect, was selected Monday to the July 9 Futures Game as the Rangers’ lone representative. The honor comes on top of White making his MLB debut June 13 and receiving a promotion to Triple A Round Rock last week.
He appeared on the Rangers Today Baseball Podcast late last month, which, clearly, triggered this wave of good fortune.
The Rangers should have more than White in the Futures Game, though. They have one of the best farm systems in the game, and surely prospect junkies would like to see, oh, outfielder Evan Carter or shortstop Luisangel Acuna.
Mess around and find out. Enjoy.
They brought a backup…🐶🐾😂😂 pic.twitter.com/FkWMOrCKE0
— 𝕐o̴g̴ (@Yoda4ever) June 26, 2023
Jeff Wilson, firstname.lastname@example.org