After a nauseating sweep at the hands of the Devil Rays, the Rangers are still down. Way, way down.
But they're not out yet.
Texas took two out of three in their weekend series against the Houston Astros, and blew out the Twins last night in Arlington, 14-4. The Rangers are still nine games behind the first place Angels, and ten games out of the AL wild card, but at least they're not totally dead in the water.
I don't have a whole lot of time to write this, as I'm busy visiting family in Round Rock, but there are a few notes before tonight's game:
- Frank Catalanotto was activated from the disabled list before yesterday's game, his first appearance since April 29th. He went 1 for 3 with a solo home run and three runs scored, as he drew a walk and was hit by a pitch as well. Good signs, considering how badly he said his timing was off earlier last week at Frisco.
- Yesterday's 14-4 win marked the first time the Rangers had scored 10 or more runs in consecutive games since September 2004, and was just the fourth time that the Rangers have scored 14 or more runs in back-to-back games in franchise history. I've felt all along that this offense has the potential to be league average or better, so it's nice to see the hitting start to pick up.
- Vicente Padilla worked quickly and threw first pitch strikes last night - and it showed. Padilla pitched well, allowing two runs on five hits and two walks in 5.2 innings. It was just his second win of the season, with the first coming on May 5th against Toronto.
- Hank Blalock had successful surgery to remove a rib in his upper right chest at Baylor Medical Center in Dallas on Monday. Blalock's expected to be released from the hospital on Wednesday, and is still expected to be out 10-12 weeks.
Texas faces Johan Santana on Tuesday night, who lost last year in his only appearance against the Rangers. He allowed five runs in seven innings at the Ballpark, as well as a pair of home runs.
Hopefully, this recent surge from the Rangers continues.
Tuesday, May 22nd Game Preview
Minnesota Twins (20-24) at Texas Rangers (18-27)
Johan Santana (4-4, 3.26 ERA) vs. Kameron Loe (1-3, 6.21 ERA)
7:05 PM CST in Arlington, Texas (Rangers Ballpark in Arlington)
TV: FSNSW | Radio: KRLD 1080 AM