Game recap: Rangers capitalize on errors, beat Orioles 8-6

  • Baltimore shortstop J.J. Hardy had made one error on the season coming into Thursday's game. He only had two games in his career in which he made two errors, the last coming in 2007. Hardy made two errors in the seventh inning alone Thursday, and three total for the first time in his career. The sure-handed Hardy has a .983 career fielding percentage.

'I was very surprised,' Rangers manager Ron Washington said. 'I've never seen him make an error. It can happen to anyone in this game, and he's certainly a class infielder.'

  • Struggling batters came through early for the Rangers. Michael Choice has fallen victim to a Profarian amalgamation of positions and places in the batting order this season, batting in six different spots and playing all three outfield positions (and DH-ing), and was hitting just .200 since the start of May.

Thursday, though, Choice launched a Chris Tillman pitch into the Orioles bullpen to extend the Ranger lead. He added a double in the eighth inning.

'It felt good, especially to have an at-bat where I battled before it happened,' Choice said. 'Hopefully we can build some momentum on that.'

  • Mitch Moreland did what a no. 3 hitter in the lineup is supposed to do. Since moving to the third spot in the order on May 24, Moreland had a slash line of .205/.239/.227. Those numbers stood at .277/.325/.420 before the shake-up of the batting order.

Washington said before the game that Moreland was taking the same approach at the plate since moving up in the order, but wasn't getting results. He was open to suggestions on who else could fill the third spot for a depleted roster. The third batter being able to turn it over to a heating-up Adrian Beltre will be huge for the offense.

  • Nine of the first 11 Rangers reached base, and the damage could've been much worse to Tillman. Double play ground balls ended each of the first two innings. (three total)

  • Rougned Odor drew his first walk as a major-leaguer in the second inning. It was his 68th plate appearance on the season. After Thursday's game, Odor's walk rate stands at 1.4 percent.

  • Orioles starter Chris Tillman matched his shortest outing of the season in terms of innings, going just one-plus while allowing five runs. In terms of batters faced, it was his shortest outing of the year as he faced only 11 Rangers. Tillman has now allowed a total of 28 earned runs in the first two innings of his starts, and only 13 in innings three through nine.

  • Colby Lewis surrendered three runs in the fifth inning, a statistical anomaly. Even though he has only completed six innings one time this season, the fifth inning is Lewis's best statistically. He had only allowed one earned run in fifth innings this season before allowing three Thursday.

  • Tanner Scheppers allowed a home run to the first batter he faced in the eighth inning. To that point, dating back to April 17, he had allowed three home runs in the same amount of time it took him to record one out. The Seattle Mariners hit two home runs in the same inning off Scheppers before his early exit from the April 17 game.
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