Rangers’ Memorable Moments Piling Up
Raise your hand if you stayed up until nearly 2:00 am on Monday night to watch the end of the Rangers/Yankees game from New York. Anyone? I must admit if I wasn’t working on Rangers Live that night I would have been among the masses who went to bed rather than wait through a three hour and thirty-five minute rain delay. I’m really glad I was working though, because this team is good enough to make a run in October and that game is “one of those” that we’ll remember at the end of the year.
It was raining quite heavily from the 5th inning on, but it wasn’t until the Yankees closer had trouble gripping the ball and finding the strike zone that the umpires decided to delay the game. A visit by Joe Girardi seemed to inspire the delay, and that pissed the Rangers off. They had the tying run on first and the potential winning run was at the plate with a 3-1 count. So when they went into the clubhouse they were determined to get back out on the field and win the game.
Normally during a 3.5 hour rain delay, the clubhouse is a quiet and moribund place, but not Monday night. The Rangers were playing music and playing cards – and they knew if they played their cards right they could get back on the field and win this game.
If you did sit happen to hang through the rain delay and it seemed like a long one to you, imagine how the players felt. Bobby Wilson said that Shin Soo Choo ran up and down the hallway in the visitor’s clubhouse yelling “Never ever quit.”
Inspired or, perhaps, annoyed by Choo, the Rangers came back out and put a hurt on the Yankees. Texas scored four runs in the 9th inning which lasted 3 hours and 58 minutes if you count the rain delay. Afterwards Adrian Beltre, who had the game winning hit told Emily Jones, “We had to win the game because that rain delay wasn’t right.”
Win it they did and in so doing they created a memory that all of us will point to at the end of the year. It is one of those games that galvanizes a team.
We’re only 78 games into the season there are already a handful of games that are memorable like that. The Rangers lead all of baseball with 25 come from behind wins this year. None was more dramatic than June 11th in Seattle. The Rangers trailed 1-0 in the ninth inning and Prince Fielder was at the plate with two outs. The team was down to it’s last strike when Prince launched one into the seats. Rougned Odor added a home run in the 11th inning and the Rangers beat the Mariners 2-1.
Because it is a 162 game season, recalling individual games in great detail is often difficult. But there is no Rangers fan who will ever forget the game on May 15th. Game number 39 of the season was against the Toronto Blue Jays. Is it starting to ring a bell? A Sunday day game, Matt Bush on the mound in just his second big league game, he “lost control” of a pitch and it plunked Jose Bautista. What happened next is the stuff of legends. Rougned Odor didn’t like the way “Joey Bats” slid into second base trying to break up a double play. So Rougie pushed Bautista and then punched his ticket to the Rangers Hall of Fame. That game will live in forever in Rangers’ lore, like some of Nolan Ryan’s great games, the David Clyde game and beating the Yankees to make it to the World Series in 2010.
Soon enough we will look back on this season, and with any luck the three games mentioned here will pale by comparison to the memories made in October.