Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Rangers Come Back to Win After Extensive Rain Delay, 9-6

     After a short 20 minute rain delay before first pitch, the New York Yankees and Texas Rangers squared off in game one of their four-game set. Ivan Nova took the ball for New York tonight, sporting a 5-5 record with a 5.15 ERA in 15 appearances. Making his 2016 debut for Texas was young right-hander Chi Chi Gonzalez. Gonzalez got called up from Triple-A Round Rock in hopes to fill the void left by Yu Darvish, who was once again placed on the DL. Along with the rain, the story of the night was offense, offense and more offense.
     The Rangers got the scoring going early on in the top of the first inning. With one out, Nova served up a solo shot to the Rangers' most important signing of the off-season, super utility-man Ian Desmond, giving Texas an early one run lead. New York, however, would be quick to respond as they came back to take the lead in the bottom of the second. Mark Teixeira led off the frame with an opposite field single and advanced to second base on Didi Gregorius' one out single. Chase Headley then tied the game as he lined a single down the left-field line that scored Teixeira and advanced Gregorius to third. Aaron Hicks then gave the Yankees a temporary lead when he grounded out, driving in Gregorius, 2-1 New York.
     Ivan Nova would allow the Rangers to come back and tie the game in the top of the third inning. He led off the frame by walking Robinson Chirinos, who came around to score on a double by Shin-Soo Choo. But, the Bombers would again take the lead back in the bottom of the third. A single by Beltran, a McCann walk and a Teixeira bloop single loaded the bases with one out. Starlin Castro then hit a soft line drive to center for a single that scored Beltran from third and gave the Yankees a one run advantage.
    When you're playing a team that's tied for the best record in all of baseball, you cannot afford to give up two leads in one game, and, that's exactly what Nova did in the top of the fourth. After filling up the bases with Rangers, Choo got to Nova yet again, this time for a two-run single that put Texas back up by one at 4-3.  Although his fastball was touching 96 mph tonight, by far the fastest he has thrown all season, he struggled mightily to locate his pitches and gave up four runs in four innings as a result.
     Despite the laboring start for Nova, the resilient Yankee offense would put the righty in a position to get the win in the bottom of the fifth inning. As YES Network's Michael Kaye said, "It must be single's night", as it took four Yankee singles to retake the lead. Brett Gardner and Carlos Beltran led off the inning with singles, and Gardner tied the game on the third consecutive single by McCann. After Teixeira and Castro failed to drive in the go-ahead run, Didi Gregorius picked both of his teammates up by lining the fourth single into left field that scored Beltran and gave the Pinstripers a 5-4 lead. Teixeira would provide a very important insurance run for New York when he smoked a line drive solo shot to right in the bottom of the seventh that made it a 6-4 game.      
    Andrew Miller ended up giving up an eighth inning solo homerun to Rougned Odor that made it a 6-5 contest. In the top of the ninth inning, amidst sheets of rain, Cjapman walked Chirinos, which prompted manager Joe Girardi to plea to the umpires to throw the tarp on the field, and they did so at 10:40 PM. At around 2 AM, The game resumed and Kirby Yates replaced Chapman and struck out Choo after inhereting a 3-1 count. But, the righty would load the bases after hitting two Rangers, and would give the lead back to Texas by serving up a two RBI single to Adrian Beltre, 7-6. Elvis Andrus drove into more when he singled to right with two outs, extending the Ranger lead to three. And, I have to say that I was as mad as John Sterling sounded on the radio call to have stuck around to witness this garbage.
     Let's hope the boys in pinstripes can get some rest tonight, as they face the Ranger's ace Cole Hamels tomorrow night(technically tonight) in game two. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM ET,  but we'll see what Mother Nature has to say about that.
   

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