The Mariners Needed Only Four More Runs to Sweep the Rangers!

Texas Rangers v Seattle Mariners
Texas Rangers v Seattle Mariners / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

The Rangers did not display their mighty batting prowess in the games against the Mariners, due to the immense talent of the Mariners’ starting pitchers: Gilbert, Kirby, and Castillo. They did get more runs in the first and third games. It was close for the Mariners, who only needed four more runs in the series to sweep... but instead lost.

Game One was a low-scoring battle. The Mariners scored early from Ty France’s home run in the first inning, TEX 0 SEA, 1. I was waiting for the Mariners to shore up the score. Mariners’ and Rangers’ fans waited for several innings as both teams did not produce at the plate. Then the Rangers scored twice in the seventh, TEX 2, SEA 1. (Unfortunately, Logan Gilbert’s great pitching did not get him the Win.)

George Kirby did get the win on Tuesday, pitching against Andrew Heaney. The Mariners hit and scored runs and the Rangers scored none. After the shutouts by the Orioles and Cubs, this was only the third time that the Rangers scored no runs this season. Holding the Rangers to no runs is impressive as they have scored the second most runs in baseball.

In the third inning, Tom Murphy doubled. Sam Haggerty singled, sending Murphy to third. Ty France singled sending Murphy and Haggerty home: SEA 2, TEX 0! In the seventh inning, AJ Pollock had a base hit followed by a Tom Murphy two-run homer: SEA 4, TEX 0. France, Jarred Kelenic, and Teoscar Hernández were all on base when A. J. Pollock hit a sacrifice fly in the eighth inning, allowing France to go home: SEA 5, TEX 0.

Luis Castillo pitched against Dane Dunning. In the first, J.P. Crawford walked. Then Ty France tried for a double but was out at second. A throwing error allowed Crawford to score: SEA 1, TEX 0. In the third, Marcus Semien homered and tied the game: SEA 1, TEX 1 In the same inning, Robbie Grossman singled, Nathaniel Lowe doubled, and Grossman scored. Then Jonah Heim doubled, enabling Lowe to score. TEX 3, SEA 1.

In the fifth inning, Julio Rodriguez singled and Kolten Wong singled, sending Julio to 3rd base. J.P. Crawford also singled, sending Wong to third and Julio home. TEX 3, SEA 2. In the sixth inning, Ezequiel Duran singled. On the next play, Duran moved to second. Josh H. Smith then singled. Marcus Semien singled and Duran scored. TEX 4, SEA 2. In the eighth inning, Jose Caballero (in for Wong) was hit by a pitch and was on first. Jared Kelenic tripled, allowing Caballero to score:  TEX 4, SEA 3.

Both the Mariners and the Rangers showed over this series that it does not necessarily take big hits to accumulate runs. Walks and singles add up, reverting back to some old-school small ball to get it done.

Two more runs in the first and third games would have made the losses into wins. I am sure the players and coaches feel frustrated that the offense struggles with hitting. On to Detroit!