The Rangers and Astros were back at it on Wednesday night, just 24 hours after Houston’s 14-1 thumping of Texas last night. 

Only tonight featured an elite pitching matchup of Max Scherzer vs. Justin Verlander. This was a matchup of two future Hall of Famers who were teammates with the New York Mets earlier in the season but are now in-state rivals competing for the AL West crown. 

However, once this game started, it didn’t look like two elite pitchers on the mound. Scherzer and Verlander would both give up home runs in the first inning, with the Astros’ coming via a two-run shot from Yordan Alverez and the Rangers’ a leadoff bomb from Marcus Semien. 

When attempting to rob a Michael Brantley home run in the 2nd inning, Adolis Garcia leaped and stayed down in right field, causing him to eventually come out of the game as the Astros led 3-1. It was later announced that Garcia left the game with right knee discomfort and will continue to be evaluated. 

The bad got worse as much of what happened last night started to happen again tonight when Jose Abreu connected on a grand slam to put the Astros up 7-1 and officially mark Max Scherzer’s worst start as a Ranger. 

Scherzer exited with a final line of 3 IP 6H 7ER 2BB 4K. When asked about Scherzer’s performance after the game, Rangers manager Bruce Bochy said:

“It was evident that he wasn’t as sharp as he’s been; really, it was his slider that was missing tonight; he didn’t have his good slider.”

The offense would struggle as a whole once again tonight, putting up just three runs on five hits as the Rangers fell 12-3.

Marcus Semien was the lone bright spot tonight as he went 4-4 with two home runs. It was Semien’s 13th career multi-homer game and first this season. 

Texas was swept by Houston and now sits three games back of the Astros in the AL West. 

The Rangers are now 4-15 in their last 18 games, which is the worst record in the MLB during that span.

Bruce Bochy went on to say:

“Obviously, it was not a good series; not a lot we did well if I’m being honest. They [Houston] played well, got on us [and] didn’t miss any mistakes; the long ball killed us this series; they put it to us; there’s no getting around that.”

Photo: Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

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