Rapid Reaction: Royals 7, Rangers 4
ARLINGTON, Texas – A sub-.500 club swept a two-game series on the road against the best team in baseball? As Ron Washington would say, that's the way baseball go.
L for Lewis: Lewis kept throwing pitches right over the middle of the plate in the first couple of innings, but he couldn’t make an accurate throw to first base. He had a throwing error in each of the first two innings, which were critical plays as the Royals built a 5-0 lead. All five of the runs were unearned, even though Kansas City had four hits and batted around the lineup in the first inning. Lewis finished with a line of seven runs (two earned) on eight hits and two walks, a night that was kind to his ERA considering the poor quality of the performance. It was the third consecutive start that Lewis has allowed at least six runs.
Doubles damage: Lewis allowed only one home run -- a solo shot by Mike Moustakas in the third inning -- to finish the night tied with the Angels’ Ervin Santana for the most homers allowed in the majors this season (12). The Royals did a lot of their damage against Lewis with doubles. Kansas City had four doubles off of Lewis, with Jarrod Dyson, Jeff Francoeur, Billy Butler and Eric Hosmer each hitting one.
Hamilton hit streak: Josh Hamilton singled to left field in the fourth to extend his hitting streak to 15 games, the longest active streak in the majors. It is the second longest hitting streak of Hamilton’s career. He had a 23-game streak in June 2010. Hamilton also had a sacrifice fly to deep center field to pad his majors-leading RBI total (45) and displayed a couple of his other tools, scoring from first on a double down the right-field line and throwing out a runner trying to stretch a single into a double.
A sorry streak: The two-game sweep by the Royals marks only the second time this season that the Rangers have lost consecutive games. Texas lost three in a row from May 1-4, dropping two in Toronto and the series opener in Cleveland. The Rangers are 8-4 in series this season.
Mediocre vs. Mazzaro: The Rangers didn’t take advantage of seeing a spot starter who was recently called up from Triple A. Kansas City’s Vin Mazzaro lasted five innings, allowing three runs on seven hits and a walk.
Murphy just misses: With two outs and runners on the corners in the first, David Murphy drove the ball to deep left-center field. Just not deep enough. Jarrod Dyson made the catch with his back against the wall. It was two feet away from being a three-run homer, but it ended up being just a long third out. Murphy hit the ball hard again in his next at-bat and was rewarded with an RBI double.
MY's misery: Michael Young's slump continued with an 0-for-4 night. He is 18-for-92 (.196) in the last 22 games, dropping his average from .414 to .280.
0s for Ogando and Koji again: Alexi Ogando pitched 1 1/3 perfect innings, striking out two during his 13 consecutive scoreless outing. Ogando has thrown 15 1/3 innings during that span, lowering his ERA from 1.93 to 0.45. ... Koji Uehara pitched a perfect eighth to extend his scoreless streak to 9 1/3 innings.
Tidbits: The Rangers fell to 10-8 at home. They are 13-6 on the road. ... There were 14 Rangers retired in a row before Brandon Snyder's pinch-hit home run with two outs in the ninth. ... Elvis Andrus' streak of 32 straight games reaching base ended when he grounded out to end the game as a pinch hitter. ... Mitch Moreland beat the shift by slapping an RBI single to the right of third baseman Mike Moustakas, who was the only Kansas City infielder playing on that side of second base. … Alberto Gonzalez did a pretty good Elvis Andrus impression at shortstop in the seventh inning, diving to his left to field a hard-hit grounder by Francouer and making a perfect throw to rob the ex-Ranger of a hit. … Announced attendance was 37,210 humans and 786 dogs. … Standing room tickets and a limited number of obstructed view seats are available for Wednesday’s game against Oakland. Obstructed view seats and scattered singles are available for Thursday’s homestand finale.
Up next: Yu Darvish faces Oakland lefty Tommy Milone in the opener of a two-game series against the A’s, the second-place team in the AL West. First pitch is at 7:05 p.m. on Fox Sports Southwest and ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM.
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
Play Podcast Rangers GM Jon Daniels joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to tackle the tough questions after his team failed to advance to the playoffs.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss having Nelson Cruz back in the lineup and how the Rangers are feeling heading into their wild-card play-in game against the Rays.
Play Podcast ESPN Insider and senior MLB analyst Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the wild-card race and the Rangers' chances of making the playoffs.
Play Podcast Chuck Cooperstein joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why he feels Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish isn't an ace.
Play Podcast Elvis Andrus joins Galloway and Company to discuss the Rangers' stretch run and the morale level in their clubhouse.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss the latest Rangers news, including the team's struggles, Ron Washington's job security and a rumored trade with the Braves.
Play Podcast Ron Washington joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss the Rangers' dismal September, who's to blame for their September struggles and his status as the team's manager.
Play Podcast Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss how some people are calling for the Rangers to fire manager Ron Washington.