Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Rangers take Game One despite the Rain

The Texas Rangers defeated the Detroit Tigers by the score of 3-2 in Game One of the 2011 American League Championship Series. The game was played in Arlington, Texas as the Texas Rangers had a better record then the Detroit Tigers and therefore have home field advantage. The game was delayed twice by rain and went deep into the night. I find the ironic thing being that in New York it was absolutely gorgeous and if the Yankees would of won that is where the games would have been played. New York had such bad weather this year and then Texas which hasn’t had rain in so long got a lot of rain for the first game of the ALCS and it is expected to be bad on Sunday for Game Two.
Justin Verlander and C.J. Wilson was the matchup. Wilson is the biggest name pitcher who will be on the free agent market this season and he did his job in Game One. He was shaky in the first game of the postseason against the Tampa Bay Rays but not in this game. The numbers look worse for the starting pitchers because of the rain, that is why they had short outings. Wilson pitched 4 2/3 innings giving up six hits and two runs. He walked five and struck out six. Wilson was cruising along until the rain came. Verlander pitched four innings giving up five hits and three runs with two walks and five strikeouts. Verlander is 0-1 in the postseason with a 6.75 ERA. He is going to win the CY young and may even win the MVP but he has had to deal with weather issues so far in the postseason. The bullpen for Detroit pitched four innings giving up one hit and no runs. They didn’t walk a batter and struck out two. The bullpen for Texas pitched 4 1/3 innings giving up one hit and no runs. They walked one and struck out eight. The bullpens for both teams did an excellent job but I am sure the managers will be looking for length out of their starters in Game Two.

Ramon Santiago had a big game for Detroit with three hits. Austin Jackson had the only RBI of the game for Detroit. Ryan Raburn, Miguel Cabrera and Jhonny Peralta each had a hit. The Tigers also drew six walks. Santiago and Jackson each had a double and the Tigers were 1-7 with runners in scoring position and they left nine men on base. Jackson made an error. Texas scattered six hits with Ian Kinsler, Adrian Beltre, Mike Napoli, Nelson Cruz, David Murphy and Mitch Moreland each getting a hit. Kinsler, Cruz and Murphy had the RBI. The Rangers drew two walks, Murphy had a triple and Cruz had a homerun. The Rangers were 1-4 with runners in scoring position and they left five men on base. Kinsler was caught stealing.

In the bottom of the second inning Murphy hit an RBI triple and Kinsler had an RBI single. Texas had a 2-0 lead which they would expand to 3-0 in the bottom of the fourth inning on a Cruz solo homerun. In the fifth inning Jackson hit an RBI double for the Tigers to make it 3-1 and a wild pitch scored Jackson to make it 3-2. Wilson got Magglio Ordonez to ground out and then the bullpen took over and shut down the Tigers the rest of the way. The final score was 3-2 in favor of the Rangers.

The best of seven series started with a bang as these two teams battled it out and the pitching especially out of the bullpen was outstanding. The two teams will play game two on Sunday night in Texas weather permitting. The series will resume in Detroit on Tuesday after an off day with Games 3, 4 and 5 if necessary in Detoit before the final two games are played back in Texas if necessary. The Rangers are trying to make the World Series for the second straight year while the Tigers are trying to reach the World Series for the first time since 2006 when they also knocked out the Yankees in the first round of the playoffs.

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