Astros Sweep Rangers

Astros Rangers

Astros 5, Rangers 3

 

ARLINGTON, Texas, Aug 31 — The Houston Astros swept the Texas Rangers on Wednesday afternoon at Globe Life Field by a final score of 5–3. The high point for the Rangers came from the bat of Corey Seager, as he hit his 29th home run of the season in the bottom of the first inning. With this series now in the books, the Rangers head up North on a seven-game road trip. On the first stop of said trip, they’ll face the Boston Red Sox for four games. That series will start on Thursday evening at 6:10 PM Central at Fenway Park. Left-hander Rich Hill (6–5, 4.32 ERA) will start that game for the Red Sox. Right-hander Glenn Otto (6–8, 4.79 ERA) will toe the slab for the Rangers.

 

 

Astros Play Small Ball

The Astros did not have any home runs to their credit in this game. All of their runs came from a variety of base hits. They got things started in the top of the first inning. Astros second baseman Jose Altuve scored on a single to centerfield by left-fielder Trey Mancini. They scored their next two runs in the top half of the second inning. This time, it was Altuve that drove in the runs. He did this with a double to right field, and it drove in David Hensley, and Mauricio Dubon. The score was 3–2 at this point in the game. Their final two runs of the afternoon came on a single by right-fielder Kyle Tucker that drove in Altuve, and Jeremy Pena.

 

 

Rangers’ Offense

The Astros came into Arlington, and swept the Rangers in this short two-game series. Try as they may, the Rangers just didn’t have any magic up their sleeves. They did, however, have a couple of offensive sparks on Wednesday afternoon. In the bottom of the first inning, the Rangers jumped out to a 2–1 lead on Corey Seager’s 29th home run of the season. Four innings later, first baseman Nathaniel Lowe drove in Marcus Semien with a single to centerfield. Unfortunately for the Rangers, that is all the offense that they could produce in this series finale.

Although he didn’t score, it is worth mentioning that Adolis Garcia, who was in the lineup as the Rangers’ DH in this one, stole his 20th base of the season in this game. He, along with teammate Marcus Semien are just the second duo in Rangers history to have 20+ home runs and 20+ stolen bases in the same season, joining Nelson Cruz and Ian Kinsler in 2009.

 

Pitching Notes

The Rangers gave the starting nod to lefty Martin Perez on Wednesday. Perez took his third loss in his last five starts. He the most runs (five R-ER) in any of his home starts this season. He has three losses since the end of a career-best nine-game winning streak, with two of those defeats coming at the hands of the Astros (also August 9 at Minute Maid Park). Perez posted his 24th straight start with 5+ IP on Wednesday. His record for 2022 now sits at 10–5, with an ERA of 2.89

The Astros went with Cristian Javier as their starting pitcher on Wednesday. Javier earned his eighth win of the season. He is now 8–9, with an ERA of 3.07 after he allowed three runs, all earned, on four hits and three walks over five innings. Wednesday’s start marked a return to the starting rotation following a brief stint in the Astros’ bullpen over which he made just one appearance (three IP on August 26 against the Baltimore Orioles). He allowed a two-run homer to the second batter he faced (Corey Seager). However, he held Texas hitters 3-for-their-next-18, holding the Rangers scoreless until Nathaniel Lowe’s RBI single in the fifth inning. Javier remains undefeated (4–0) over six games, five of which were starts, in his career at Globe Life Field.

 

Miscellaneous Notes

The Rangers lost four straight games to finish this home stand. It is the club’s longest losing skid since the All-Star break, and one loss shy of matching their longest losing streak of the season (0–5, 4/15-20). They finished August with 12 wins. Nathaniel Lowe went 2-for-2 with a double, RBI single, and two walks. He raised his season batting average to .301.

Lowe also tied his season high by getting on base four times, most at home in ’22 as previous three were on the road. He finished August with the following totals: .389/.450/.649/1.098 (42-108), seven HR, five 2B, 3B, 21 RBI. This month, he has seen his season BA rise from .275 to .301 and OPS rise from .774 to .850. It marks the highest monthly hit total (42) by a Ranger since Elvis Andrus had 43 hits in August 2017, and the highest monthly OPS by a Ranger (min. 50 PA) since Joey Gallo in June 2021 (1.105).

Main Photo:
Embed from Getty Images

Players Mentioned:

Corey SeagerRich Hill, Glenn OttoJose Altuve, Trey Mancini, David Hensley, Mauricio Dubon, Kyle Tucker, Jeremy PenaNathaniel Lowe, Marcus SemienAdolis Garcia, Nelson Cruz, Ian KinslerMartin Perez, Cristian Javier, Elvis Andrus, Joey Gallo