In a complete turnaround from the past few games, the Rangers shut out the Rockies as they went on to win the game 5-0.
The Rangers took an early lead in the second, as an Alex Rios double was followed with a RBI single from Leonys Martin. Martin would reach second base on a balk, steal third, and then score on an error.
Prince Fielder hit a solo home run in the sixth to bring the score to 3-0, and the Rangers would add their final two runs in the seventh. Chirinos leadoff the inning with a double, but would reach third on an error. Shin-Soo Choo was hit by a pitch, and then a Michael Choice single scored Chirinos. Choo would come in to score on a wild pitch, giving the Rangers an ultimate 5-0 lead.
The win tonight would not have been possible without the fantastic start from Matt Harrison. Harrison went 5 ⅓ innings, but gave up only three hits and no runs during that time. It was Harrison’s first win since 2012, and he believes it couldn’t have come at a better time.
“It felt good to get a win” said Harrison. “Being so long off. Even nicer doing it at home in front of the fans. I don’t want to take that for granted, and I’ll keep pushing, and keep trying to get better.”
A bullpen composed of Nick Martinez, Aaron Poreda, Jason Frasor and Joakim Soria also posted shutout innings. Martinez wasn’t used in the long-inning situation that he’s become used to, but the versatility the young stud has shown on the field is only making his stay in the big leagues that much more impressive.
“I think my role right now is to help on whenever I can in any situation” said Martinez. “Just have to be ready to pitch. I’ve started, I’ve been in relief throwing five innings, I’ve come in and thrown one inning, so anyway I can help this team, I’m ready.”
The Rangers’ defense contributed largely to the shutout of the Rockies, as many quality plays were made at key times during the game. Whether it was the double-play Rougned Odor made with bases loaded (also his first time to touch the ball in major league play), or the jaw-dropping throw from Rios to Chirinos that prevented Colorado from getting on the board, the defense sealed the trifecta and gave the Rangers a much needed win.
Hitting, pitching and fielding. The Rangers had struggled with all three against the Rockies in the past few games, but Thursday night, that changed. Headed into a weekend series with the Red Sox, the Rangers just might have the momentum they need to start winning games again.
“It’s a huge team win for us” said Harrison. “I can’t say enough about our defense, and our offense put some runs on the board for us, and then the bullpen coming in and shutting it down from there. I think the whole night, the momentum was on our side.”
Yu Darvish is back on the mound Friday night, as the Rangers look to take down the Red Sox. Game time is slated for 7:05 p.m. CT.