Reaction: Rangers vs. Brewers ends in 4th
Head umpire Mark Ripperger signaled for the tarp in the bottom of the fourth at 2:34 p.m. The game was quickly called moments after both clubs entered their clubhouses.
Clouds hovered over Maryvale Baseball Park all game, but the rain didn't start until the top of the fourth. Fans headed for cover in the concourse during shortstop Yangervis Solarte's at-bat. He grounded out, as well as second baseman Ian Kinsler and outfielder David Murphy to end the top half of the inning.
The game went into a rain delay after pitcher Michael Kirkman threw a ball to leadoff outfielder Carlos Gomez. The two clubs called each other and figured it'd be best to end the game.
"That’s an experienced umpire realizing the conditions," bench coach Jackie Moore said. "Let’s get out of here before someone gets hurt."
Ross starts: Pitcher Robbie Ross gave up four runs -- three earned -- on five hits in his first Cactus League start. The second round pick in the 2008 MLB June amateur draft lasted 2 1/3 innings against the Brewers.
Ross knew he had to keep his pitches down in the zone with the wind blowing from home plate towards the outfield, but his pitches were up during his outing. Fortunately for Ross, the only run scored in the first was unearned on a throwing error from Solarte.
When Ross returned to the mound during the second inning, it was his first multi-inning appearance in spring training. Ross started 20 games for High-A Myrtle Beach and six games for Double-A Frisco last season.
"It was a lot different coming out for one inning," Ross said. "It was fun just getting to experience that in a starting role again and seeing how it works like that."
The Brewers started the second inning with consecutive singles. With runners on the corner, the Brewers attempted to double steal. Second baseman Cesar Izturis was out at second, but outfielder Caleb Gindl scored from third -- his first earned run allowed this spring. Ross followed that with two walks.
Once Ross gave up two hits to three batters to start the third, bullpen coach Andy Hawkins took him off the mound to end his day.
"It's been great just getting to face guys like that of that caliber," Ross said. "I haven't really gotten to face that as much but now it felt good to see how I pinned against those guys."
Three errors: Along with Solarte's error in the first inning, the Rangers added two more in the third. Kinsler couldn't place himself under a pop up from Gamel due to the wind. Gamel got on base for a single. Kinsler tried to get outfielder Nyjer Morgan out at the plate but his throw was off target. Catcher Brett Micholas then threw the ball to second, which was dropped by Kinsler. Gamel reached second on an error.
Two batters later, Nicholas pegged Izturis in the back on a sacrifice bunt. Gindl would score from third and Izturis would advance to second on the throwing error.
Murphy, Hawpe each homer: Outfielder Daivd Murphy got a two-run homer in the first inning. He drove the ball off Tyler Thomburg toward center field, where it barely cleared the wall. He went 1-for-2 with a walk in the shortened game.
Brad Hawpe hit a two-run shot off former Ranger Kameron Loe in the third inning. The ball landed on the left field grass with some help from the wind. Hawpe went 2-for-2.
Gentry returns: Craig Gentry returned to center field for the first time since he sprained his left wrist Tuesday. He went 0-for-2 with a strikeout.
A scary moment happened in the outfield as Gentry attempted to field a ball in the third inning. He smashed into the center field wall to catch a fly ball from Gindl. The outfield wall in center field swung open and Gentry slightly hobbled as he made the throw to his cutoff man. Gindl reached on a triple.
Gentry walked it off and remained in the game.
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