ON THE MOUND
Great outing for Brandon, especially considering the competition, which should go a LONG way in building his confidence. Though he had runners on base in FOUR of the SIX full innings he pitched, he was able to either work out of trouble or limit the damage. He also had a nice balance of fly outs to ground outs.
SIX innings ~ FIVE hits ~ THREE runs ~ TWO earned runs ~ ONE walk ~ FIVE strikeouts
Bobby walked the lead off guy and then fielded a sac bunt as that runner advanced but, it wouldn’t matter, as Stephen came to strikeout the next two batters (one on a curve, another on a 98mph fastball) of the 7th.
Unfortunately, after getting TWO outs and walking ONE in the 8th, Stephen had to come out due to some sort of injury (UGH!). Ollie came in and battled the first batter he faced (Murphy) who eventually hit a high fly ball that Dustin A L M O S T got to but, it skimmed of the tip of his back-handed glove in shallow center field. Thankfully, after another fairly long battle with the next guy (Soto) Ollie got him to fly out to right field for the third out.
Then, the Bartender came in for “closing time” and got a fly out to center field, a strikeout with his signature NASTY curve and then a fly out to right field to earn his FIFTH save and preserve Brandon’s FIRST big league victory!
AT THE PLATE
Back-to-back doubles by Justin and Kyle tied it at ONE in the 2nd
Just as I was thinking Rauuuuuuul needs to make up for the late / weak throw that allowed a runner to advance to 3B in the 4th (even though he was stranded there) he BOMBS one to right center in the bottom of the inning to give the M’s the 2-1 lead in the 2nd
Not to be outdone in the “making up for boo-boos” department, Jesus drove Kyle in (after he’d checked in with his second double) to tie the game at 3 and help atone for his passed ball in the top of the inning.
Dustin recorded his first RBI of the season – a single to score Jesus from 2B (yes, really!) to give the M’s a 4-3 lead that they would not relinquish!
IN THE FIELD
Not a real sparkling day in the field – no double plays, but, they did nail a runner at home with one out in the 5th and a runner at 3B, Dustin snared a ground ball and threw home to Jesus to just barely nail the runner.
The execution was much less than stellar on the next couple of plays when Jesus made a poor throw to 2B and Dustin makes an equally poor catch and tag, allowing the runner to swipe 2B (and he’d eventually score) then a runner aboard via HBP eventually scored on a passed ball to give the Rangers the lead 3-2. But, great pitching and just enough O made it all moot 🙂
Tweets of the game . . .
And now, a MUCH needed day off at home . . .
the M’s are the only team to start the season with FOURTEEN straight games. They get the day off tomorrow and then play for SIXTEEN straight #ImTiredJustThinkingAboutIt