Playing with black armbands and heavy hearts, the Rangers roughed up All-Star left-hander Gio Gonzalez and beat the A’s 8-5 on Friday night.
The Rangers started this one in torrid fashion, going deep three times in the first and second innings off a pitcher who had surrendered just six homers in 109 innings for the season. Mike Napoli, Adrian Beltre and Ian Kinsler did the damage, as the Rangers scored seven runs between the two frames.
Gonzalez bounced back to throw two scoreless innings from there, but he was removed after four, making it his shortest outing of the season. Only three of the seven runs he gave up were earned.
Napoli ended up collecting two doubles to go along with his grand slam in the first.
Josh Hamilton, back in left field after the nightmare 24 hours earlier, finished the game with a single and a run scored in five at-bats.
C.J. Wilson picked up the win for Texas, though it wasn’t one of his better outings. He gave up four of Oakland’s runs while working seven innings. Closer Neftali Feliz allowed a single run in the ninth to make it 8-5.
Why yes, it is a slow news day. But let’s not allow that to take away from some MLB history.
Last night a young man named Dovydas Neverauskas pitched in mopup duty for the Pirates, who were getting hammered by the Cubs. Mr. Neverauskas pitched two innings, allowing one run, making him, by default, the most effective pitcher the Pirates sent out there last night.
That’s good, but that’s not what makes it historic. What makes it historic is that Neverauskas is the first person born and raised in Lithuania to make the Majors. Here’s some back story on him from last year’s Futures Game.
Lithuania is known for producing basketball players. Now it has its first major leaguer. Whether he becomes baseball’s Arvydas Sabonis is an open question.
Madison Bumgarner talked to the press yesterday about his dirt bike injury and its fallout.
While there is some speculation that the Giants may change their approach to Bumgarner’s contract situation at some point as a result of all of this, yesterday Bumgarner noted that the organization has been supportive as have his teammates. He said he apologized to them as well for an act he characterized as “definitely not the most responsible decision.”
As for the wreck itself, Bumgarner was a bit embarrassed to say that it wasn’t the result of doing anything cool or spectacular on the bike. Sounds like he probably just laid the thing down. Guess it makes no real difference given that he’s injured either way, but you’d hope to at least get a cool story out of it. Alas.
Here’s video of him talking to the press. The best and most accurate takeaway from it: when he says “it sucks.” Yep.