The Rangers offense stopped swinging for the fences Saturday and started getting results.
On the way to an 8-6 win over Tampa Bay, the Rangers scored their first seven runs without the benefit of a homer. That's a significant accomplishment for a team that had never won a postseason game in which it failed to homer. The streak remains intact, however, because Mitch Moreland homered in the eighth for the Rangers' final run.
The Rangers scored five runs in the fourth to come back from a 3-0 deficit. They did not have an extra base hit in the inning. They started the rally with a hit batter and scored their first run on another hit batter. They scored on a strikeout on a wild pitch and they added three singles from the Nos. 3-4 and 6 hitters to inflict the bulk of the pain.
After a couple of awkward swings with a man on first, Josh Hamilton bounced a ball through the overshift on the right side of the infield. Michael Young followed with a line-drive single to left to load the bases.
Adrian Beltre "drove" in the first run when he was hit by a pitch. And then, C Mike Napoli, whose two homers in the final game of the season delivered home field advantage in this round of the playoffs, showed he could be just as dangerous with a single. His liner to left drove home the go-ahead runs.
The Rangers scored twice more in the sixth on a pair of singles, the team's first pinch hit sac bunt in more than four years, a hit batter and a two-run double to right by pull-happy Ian Kinsler.
"We're capable of scoring runs in anyway," Kinsler said. "We've got lots of ways to create havoc. We feel we are very versatile and don't have to sit back and wait for a three-run homer. Our approach is really to single them to death."
Copyright (C) 2011 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.