After being swept by the surging Cleveland Indians over the weekend, many Rangers fans were starting to lose faith that the team would see the post-season this year.
But the Rangers have given them a new sense of hope with a dramatic series sweep against division rivals, the Angels, capped by Wednesday's thrilling 2-1 victory.
This was no ordinary sweep. The Rangers won all three games with walk-off home runs, lifting the collective hope of all Texas fans that the season is still far from over.
Nelson Cruz homered deep into left field in the second inning to get the Rangers on the board. The Angels didn’t respond until the seventh inning when Josh Hamilton hit his first home run against his former team in 36 at-bats, driving one over the wall in center field.
But the Rangers responded, and Adrian Beltre homered to left in the bottom of the ninth, bringing one of the most important series of this Rangers season to a close in dramatic fashion.
Whatever Ron Washington said to his club in his closed-door team meeting following the sweep by the Indians seems to have worked.
The Rangers aren’t out of the woods yet, though. Major League Baseball will announce Biogenesis-related suspensions before the weekend, and it’s widely thought that Nelson Cruz will be included and will not contest his suspension, should he receive one.
As the Rangers have yet to acquire a big hitter to potentially replace Cruz and lift the team’s slumping offense, there is still much work to do.
The Rangers were aided by the Toronto Blue Jays, who beat the Oakland Athletics on Wednesday. That reduces the A’s lead in the West to four games.
The next two weeks for the Rangers see them on the road facing three AL West teams, starting with the division-leading Athletics. That series is followed by another match-up with the Angels, and ends with a trip to Houston to take on the last-place Astros.