On a night when Matt Harrison would probably have rather been snuggled up in front of a fire place reading the Hunger Games, he was tasked with getting the Rangers started off on their first road trip of the young 2012 season. The book can wait…
At first pitch, the conditions were 49 degrees with 20-30 MPH winds…and wet due to a pregame rain, which would return in lighter form in the late innings of this game. Harrison held the Twinkies to 1 run on 7 hits and 2 walks, while striking out 4. Throughout the night there were several key defensive plays made by David Murphy, Nelson Cruz and Elvis Andrus just to name a few. It was a total team effort, which is exactly what you want to see in the team’s first game on the road.
“He was throwing strikes, 1-2-3 … that’s always good for your defense,” third baseman Adrian Beltre said. “You have to be on your toes. He got a lot of ground balls and we stayed ready. When he needed the double play, he got it. He pitched great tonight.”
- Alexi Ogando got the call to close out the game and earned his first save of the season…I’ll put the over/under on saves for Alexi for 2012 at 6. Take a side and comment below.
- Wash commented on using Ogando as opposed to Nathan saying that he wanted to give Joe an extra day of rest.
- Yu Darvish Take 2
“The only thing he needs to do different is throw strikes early,” Rangers manager Ron Washington said. “That’s it. I think he’ll take care of that part. Eliminate all those free passes early and he’ll be fine.”
“Got all the pitches, very athletic, great stuff, great changeup,” Gardenhire said. “I saw his changeup just falling off the table. They said he was a little excited in his first start, and we know this guy’s a very good pitcher.”
- Joe Nathan Returns
“Definitely felt weird walking into the stadium. Felt like I was walking in the wrong doors,” Nathan said prior to Friday’s game. “It’s part of the game. It’s not my first time switching teams. But after being with this club, Minnesota, for so long, to come over here for the first time was awkward for sure.”
- Michael Young set another franchise record last night, passing up Juan Gonzalez for most total bases in Rangers history.
- Rangers face Nick Blackburn tonight, who they have hit very well historically.