Rangers bring series to White Sox

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ARLINGTON – The Rangers finished their homestands final game in a 7-2 loss to the White Sox at Globe Life Field on Sunday afternoon.

Veteran pitchers Jordan Lyles and Mike Foltynewicz – who appeared in his first game since being eliminated from the COVID list – gave up a total of seven runs after starter Lyles was knocked out of the game in the fourth inning.

Isiah Kiner-Falefa had two singles and two steals. His second single drove DJ Peters for the first run of the day of the Rangers at the end of the fifth inning. The shortstop has had hits in nine of its last 10 games, five of which were multi-hit efforts. After running in the eighth inning, he scored the Rangers’ other run with a sacrificial fly from Adolis García.

Texas finished the homestand, which opened with a four-game set against the Astros 2-5.

Here are three takeaways as the Rangers head out on their final road trip of the season:

1) Kiner-Falefa firmly on either side of the ball
Kiner-Falefa isn’t exactly fighting for his 2022 job right now, but he is well aware of the hot free agent market for shortstop this coming winter. With names like Trevor Story, Carlos Correa and Corey Seager among others to hit the free agency, Kiner-Falefa has shown he is more than capable of holding the position for Texas.

Defensively, the winner of the Gold Glove Award 2020 – on the third basis – was just as good with the change of position. But offensively, the improvement was really evident.

While his performance figures leave something to be desired, Kiner-Falefa scores .270 / .310 / .357 and was more than useful in the first two places in the list this season.

While at home he had a slash line of .434 / .480 / .435 over six games. During his 12-game on-base streak, he hit .388 (19-for-49).

“It was nice to see him get some results and it was just a straight grind,” said Woodward of Kiner-Falefa’s performance against the White Sox. “He just fought and fought. He gets [to pitchers]. He fights with two strokes and uses the whole field. It’s really important for him to end the season strong because he’s had a good year. I know he had a tough time there for a while [which] somehow he drained his numbers a bit, but overall he was the heart and soul [of the team]. “

2) rotational vibration
The rotation of Rangers has changed constantly since seven players, including four pitchers, landed on the COVID list in August. With all the players back at the club, Woodward said the Rangers would be running a six-man rotation for the remainder of the season. With only 13 games remaining and a day off between the upcoming road trip and the final home stand, Texas wants to get the most out of its young pitching staff without pushing them to throw too many innings.

Lyles and Taylor Hearn as well as rookies Dane Dunning, Glenn Otto and AJ Alexy will all start in the last two weeks of the season. Foltynewicz is expected to get out of the bullpen longer instead of going back to the rotation.

Woodward said Lyles and Hearn have the ability to dig deep into games while the rookies will likely be at an easy limit the rest of the way. For those without limits, it will be important to indicate the length of the stick.

“I think the youngsters either need to recover from a tough outing or maintain some consistency,” said Woodward. “It’s been a long year for a lot of guys, but it’s really important that they get out of there. I think it would be good for a lot of these young people just to try and maintain some consistency until the end of the year, whether they are dealing with mental or physical exhaustion. It’s a really difficult thing for a lot of these guys. “

3) On the road again
The Rangers have been notoriously bad this season with a 22-52 record off Globe Life Field. On the last road trip of the season, they compete against the Yankees and Orioles. While the Yankees are in the final sprint for a spot in the American League Wild Card, both Texas and Baltimore are fighting for the four best picks in next June’s draft.

The Rangers went 6-3 on their last road trip against the Angels, D-Backs and A’s. Woodward has often said that he doesn’t care about draft picks and wants to create a winning culture without “refueling”.

“We’re in the business of winning,” Woodward said on September 7th in Arizona. “And there were really good draft picks, the # 4 and # 5 were he was there and we could predict the future and he would be number 1 then you can argue, but I haven’t heard that yet. I couldn’t convince myself to go into every game and try to lose a game or lose a game. That has never been the case. So I think it’s just important to convey victory to the organization. “


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