Wasted chances early hurt Rangers late

August, 10, 2012
8/10/12
11:15
PM CT
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Texas Rangers outfielder Nelson Cruz knew that his club was going to need more than two runs.

"I told (Adrian) Beltre in the fifth inning that we weren't going to win the game 2-1," Cruz said. "We had chances to get more runs early and we didn't do it."

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Texas had a runner on base in every inning of Friday's 6-2 loss to the Detroit Tigers. But in the second and third innings, the club really had a chance to stake Scott Feldman to a big lead. Cruz and Michael Young both got on base to lead off the second and moved up a base on a passed ball as David Murphy struck out. But even with one out and runners in scoring position, Mike Napoli and Mitch Moreland weren't able to convert the scoring chance.

In the third, Elvis Andrus' single after Ian Kinsler's double scored the club's first run of the game. Andrus got aggressive and tried to get to second on the throw, but Miguel Cabrera cut it off and threw to second, where Andrus was called out on a close play. Andrus said he watched the video and was safe.

"It was too close for me to tell," manager Ron Washington said. "When he threw the ball in I was just hoping that Cabrera would go to sleep. But he didn't. Once again, we were aggressive right there and we paid for it."

But the out cleared the bases. The Rangers ended up with two hits and a hit-by-pitch to load the bases, but David Murphy's deep fly ball ended the inning with just the one run scored on the Andrus single. If the call goes the other way for Texas, perhaps the inning and the game is altered. But it didn't and the Rangers couldn't take advantage of the chances they had against starter Max Scherzer.

"All we had to do was put the ball in play in those situations; we just didn't," Washington said. "It came back and it got us."

Texas ended up leaving eight men on base and after the third inning never got another runner into scoring position.
Richard Durrett joined ESPNDallas.com in September 2009. He writes about colleges, the Dallas Stars and the Texas Rangers. Richard spent nine years at The Dallas Morning News covering the Rangers, Stars, colleges, motorsports and high schools.

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TEAM LEADERS

WINS LEADER
Martin Perez
WINS ERA SO IP
3 1.86 20 29
OTHER LEADERS
BAL. Martin .315
HRR. Chirinos 2
RBIL. Martin 9
RE. Andrus 11
OPSS. Choo .827
ERAY. Darvish 0.82
SOY. Darvish 23