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Holland turns in masterful performance

Pitches into ninth inning, striking out seven, to save Rangers' bullpen and season

Updated: October 24, 2011, 8:26 AM ET
By Jean-Jacques Taylor | ESPNDallas.com

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Let's be honest: None of us anticipated Derek Holland's masterful World Series performance.

Not Jon Daniels. Not Nolan Ryan. Not me. Or you.

We're being honest, so not even Ron Washington could have or would have predicted Holland's dominant performance until the manager put his hands on the 25-year-old's shoulder moments before the game's first pitch.

Holland's usual nervous energy? Nonexistent. So Washington stared into his starter's eyes.

"He was ...

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