The Texas Rangers season has drawn to a close after being swept by the Toronto Blue Jays. The Rangers came into the playoffs with the best record in the American League, but they didn’t play like it. Now that their season is over, here are my final thoughts:
The Starting Pitching Did Not Show Up
In three games, the Texas starters gave up 16 earned runs. Cole Hamels has been one of the game’s best postseason pitchers throughout his career, but struggled against the Blue Jays offense. He lasted only 3.1 innings, surrendering 6 hits and 3 walks. Yu Darvish wasn’t much better. While he threw 5 innings, he gave up 4 home runs.
These were the two guys that Texas needed to get them to the next round and they failed to execute, but that wasn’t the Rangers’ only issue.
They Also Had No Offense
The Rangers weren’t a great offensive team in the regular season, but still it’s hard to win games in the playoffs without hitting. As a team they slashed a miserable .204/.255/.320. They simply didn’t put any pressure on Toronto. Blue Jays pitchers rarely had to work out of jams, or even deal with base runners.
Elvis Andrus does deserve some credit, though. Last season, he played a huge role in that one inning, yeah, this inning. But, he was the lone offensive threat for the Rangers in this series. He slashed .364/.364/.818 with 1 home run and 2 runs scored. In my opinion, he redeemed himself.
Toronto Got the Last Laugh
Toronto fans may have had the sign of the year. Hanging in the stands was a sign that read, “Would rather get punched in May than get knocked out in October.” If anyone doesn’t remember, that is a direct response to this incident:
But now, Toronto fans are the one’s laughing, especially after Texas fans were using the incident to have their own fun. It was fitting that Odor played a role in the final play, committing a throwing error that allowed Donaldson to score the winning run.
Texas was Overrated
In the end, I think it’s fair to say that Texas may have been a bit overrated. Yes, they had the best record in the American League, but it’s unclear how they got there. They didn’t have a great offense. They didn’t have a good pitching staff. Maybe they really were just the lucky, which a number of baseball thinkers have suggested. It really doesn’t matter though. The Rangers are going home, and Toronto is heading back to the ALCS.