Monday, May 13, 2013

Launching in Houston.

Six games. That's how far up the Rangers are on the A's after last night's thumping of the Astros. Nice lead.

Nick Tepesch returned to his early season form as he allowed just one Houston run to cross the plate in six innings. He recorded eight strikeouts and just one walk while in route to his third run win of the season and the Rangers sweep of the 'Stros.

Meanwhile the offense brought their bats with them. Three home runs helped lead the charge as Texas plated 12 runs. Very encouraging to see David Murphy send one out again. Adrain Beltre, shown here on card 29 of the 2013 Topps Emerald set, was the big bopper of the night. Adrian went 4-for-5 with two runs scored. He hammered a double and a home run to go along with two singles. His four RBI were enough to overshadow his throwing error in the fourth inning.

Nice to see the bats heating up, especially with the trip to Oakland kicking off tonight. Tepesch's start is also an encouragement with Colby Lewis and Martin Perez making slow progress on their rehab assignments.

The second part of the 12-7 score bothers me. For the second night in a row Texas won in spite of a melt-down by the middle relievers. Last night the culprit was Derek Lowe, the night before it was Michael Kirkman. That's a concern. It won't matter how good the rotation or the back end of the bullpen is if the opposing team can drive a Mack truck through the middle relief.

The middle relief stumbles are a concern when you consider 13 games. That's how far the Rangers were up on the A's when Oakland began their run down the stretch. Gotta make sure green remains a color on a Topps card and not the color of the uniforms on the division winners.

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