I can’t consider a extra apropos latest example of a roller coaster throughout baseball’s common season than this yr’s Texas Rangers. Within the month of August, the Rangers had been considered each because the American League’s main contender to make the World Collection and likewise had a big swath of their fan base throw within the towel for the way crap they appeared towards common, at finest, groups. Texas began sizzling, cooled off, received sizzling once more — six gamers made the ultimate All-Star Game roster; and 5 of them began — sucked, turned pink sizzling, grunted by means of a 12-out-of-10 on the mondo-dook-o-meter, and now are one recreation away from sweeping the Blue Jays, one in every of its principal opponents for a Wild Card spot, in Canada.
To not point out, after crapping away the three.5-game lead in the AL West the Rangers had over the cheatin’ Astros and a 7.5-game lead over the third-place Mariners that they had a month in the past at the moment, primarily resulting from dropping 16 of 20 between Aug. 16 and Sept. 6, they’ve gained their final 5, with one other spherical of manageable matchups coming down the pike. Apart from tonight’s recreation in Toronto, the Rangers have one opponent left on their schedule that’s not hovering round .500 or worse. Texas’ remaining seven video games towards Seattle, together with a 4-game collection within the Pacific Northwest to finish the season, will probably decide each groups’ playoff future, or lack thereof.
The Rangers’ present turnaround was sudden as a result of earlier than they went north of the border, the Blue Jays weren’t slumping, profitable eight of their final 10 video games. It was two groups stepping into reverse instructions who then employed a double reverse uno card. This all comes whereas Texas’ large trade-deadline acquisition, Max Scherzer, hasn’t performed a rattling factor for the staff and received booed in Queens through the staff’s latest collection towards the Mets. Then Scherzer gets hurt on Tuesday evening and is probably going performed for the yr, as a result of the Rangers can’t have good issues or flaming baggage of poop. How this journey will finish for a resurgent staff beneath a first-year supervisor who’s nonetheless in some way disappointing might be one of the attention-grabbing tales in baseball over the past a number of years.
It will shock nobody if the Rangers made the playoffs. At their finest, they’re clearly among the finest groups in baseball. It will additionally shock nobody if Texas missed the playoffs, as a result of, at its worst, it’s as efficient as washing your palms with mustard. Nevertheless it’s nonetheless higher than Oakland with these yellow-drenched (Rollie) fingers. It’s anybody’s guess which model of the Rangers will present up on any given evening. By way of three video games in Toronto, Texas has outscored the Blue Jays 26-7. In opposition to Houston earlier this month, the Rangers had been outscored 39-10 in a 3-game sweep. It’s arduous to know the place to gauge expectations for the staff, as a result of blatant examples of each have been really easy to see and analyze.
I nonetheless have a tough time believing the Rangers gained’t be within the playoffs, regardless that they’re a game back of Houston within the AL West and solely a recreation forward of Toronto within the Wild Card standings. There’s simply an excessive amount of high quality in Arlington in comparison with the remainder of the American League to consider in any other case. That’s, when the Rangers are good, they’ve that a lot potential they usually’ve proven they’ll’t be trusted.