The Texas Rangers split a double header with the Yankees on Sunday in part thanks to great pitching. Dane Dunning was rock solid in game 1, which the Rangers wound up losing 2-1.
Dunning went 6 innings, giving up one run on two hits with 5 k’s. John King gave up the walk-off home run in the ninth for the Yankees victory. Chris Woodward caused a little controversy with his post game comment about a little league ballpark.
I suppose the NY media didn’t want to talk about how the Yankees should have murdered the Rangers but did nothing of the sort. Woodward’s comments were ill-advised, but he was obviously joking.
Again in the second game, the Rangers got some good pitching. Glenn Otto gave up 2 runs in 5 innings of work. After Otto, Only Matt Moore gave up a hit for the remainder of the game, although he did load the bases with two walks.
Danny Santana (the janitor per Chris Halicke of Inside the Rangers) got Giancarlo Stanton to pop out in both games with runners on base. The short spring training drag appears to be coming to an end for the Texas Rangers.
The Rangers team ERA is now sitting at 4.07, but in the last fifteen days it is 2.73. In the last seven days it sits at 2.00. They are the fourth best pitching staff in the AL in the last 15 days and the second best in the last 7 days.
They have only 2 starting pitchers, Jon Gray (7.50) and Taylor Hearn (6.53), who have an ERA above 3.50. In the bullpen Matt Moore has an ERA of 0.71. Brock Burke and Joe Barlow have a 1.93 ERA. Dennis Santana is posting a 1.29 ERA.
Now the bullpen, which is going to get better by the way, has been a major strength the past 15 days. The bats struggled against the Yankees, but the Rangers still managed to split the double header.
With the return of Jose LeClerc and Jonathan Hernandez, this bullpen should become even better. It could be scary good by the end of the season.
Good performance breeds success. It also breeds confidence, which the Rangers pen seems to have right now.
Taylor Hearn is going to have a really good season, that is my prediction. His ERA will be much lower by July. Jon Gray will also come around.
The Rangers will also add someone like Cole Winn, Jake Latz or A.J. Alexy at some point this season. This team could be a problem for opposing hitters in the next few seasons.
Enjoy what we are seeing, there will be more rough patches ahead. But for now, pitching is a strength for this team.