The Rangers‘ spiral, coupled with the Seattle Mariners winning nine of their last 10 games, has created a tie atop the American League West. The teams reside one game ahead of the Houston Astros.
Texas manager Bruce Bochy said his club isn’t going to push the panic button despite losing a five-game lead since the start of July.
“We’ve met. We’ve talked,” Bochy said. “There’s nothing to talk about. You have a choice in this game. You come out tomorrow and give it all you’ve got. That’s what we’ve got to do. We can’t think about what’s happened in the last week and a half.”
The Rangers might have the perfect pitcher to call upon Saturday in right-hander Max Scherzer (12-5, 3.77 ERA).
The three-time Cy Young Award winner is 3-1 with a 2.66 ERA and .169 opponent’s batting average in four starts since being acquired from the New York Mets. He is 9-2 with a 4.44 ERA in 16 career starts against Minnesota, including 5-1 with a 3.83 ERA in eight starts at Target Field.
“We’re still in a good situation,” Bochy said. “That’s how we’ve got to feel. … This is a tough rut to be in. There’s no getting around it. It’s time to bow our necks and find a way to win a ballgame and get this thing turned around.”
“There’s nothing we can do about it now,” said Rangers catcher Mitch Garver, who homered in Friday’s 12-2 loss to the Twins. “You can’t go backwards. We’ve let some games slip out, and we’re kind of on a little skid. It’s on us to bring it back together and do what we can do to scratch out some wins.”
Right-hander Joe Ryan (9-8, 4.43 ERA), who has missed the last three weeks with a strained left groin, will be reinstated from the 15-day injured list and start Saturday’s game for the Twins. Ryan is 0-1 with a 2.84 ERA in one career start against the Rangers.
It will be the first start since Aug. 2 for Ryan, who gave up seven runs on nine hits — including four home runs — over four innings in a 7-3 loss at St. Louis. It was after that defeat that Ryan revealed he had been trying to pitch with the groin strain he said he sustained while stretching before a 6-2 defeat at Atlanta on June 27.
Ryan gave up four home runs in that loss, including three in the second inning, and compiled an 8.63 ERA over seven starts before going on the injured list.
“The communication on this certainly has to be better, and he knows that,” Minnesota manager Rocco Baldelli said.
Before the injury, Ryan had an 8-4 record and 2.98 ERA and was coming off his finest game of the season, a three-hit shutout of the Boston Red Sox.
“I was trying to do it on my own,” Ryan said. “Didn’t probably take the best route to notifying everyone. I just tried to work through some stuff for a while. Thought I was getting there, and it just kept bugging me.”
Carlos Correa, Edouard Julien and Max Kepler homered and Matt Wallner had a three-run triple for Minnesota in its win on Friday. The Twins, who rallied to win the series opener 7-5 on Thursday, have eight home runs in the first two games against Texas.
“Our guys competed very well at the plate the whole night,” Baldelli said. “We swung the bats really good. Up and down the lineup, hard-hit balls all over the place.”
—Field Level Media
Original source here
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